Bobby Kerr’s Clever Business Tips


Business Agony Uncle, Bobby Kerr is back with some more expert advice for SME employers and employees. This week Bobby gives advice on how to follow your business dreams and….doughnuts.
Good Business Ideas – Turning Dreams into Reality 
Next up this week is Brian, who contacted Bobby looking for some advice on how to take a good business idea to the next level. Brian is confident that his idea is good enough, however is unsure of the next steps, and who to speak to about turning his idea into a reality. 
Bobby’s Advice
It’s really great that Brian is thinking so positively about business, it’s always nice to hear about budding entrepreneurs. First of all, Brian needs to make this more than just an idea, which involves a number of key steps:
  1. Research – Brian needs to conduct research into the current market and how his business will fit into it
  2. Competitor analysis – Similar to market research, Brian needs to gauge the current competition and how this will affect his market penetration. What is the USP of his idea i.e. what differentiates his business idea from everyone else’s?
  3. Draw up a clear business plan – This is crucial in order to secure funding or backing from business investors. A business plan outlines every aspect of the business, from a detailed description of the product/service to a detailed financial analysis. There are a number of resources online where Brian can get advice on taking the next steps.
  4. Seek advice from his local enterprise office to see if there are any initiatives worth considering for his potential business or simply for some advice
Jumping on the Doughnut Bandwagon
Last up is Jim from Westmeath who operates a number of small bakeries across the midlands and west Leinster. Jim has noticed the recent opening of a number of doughnut bars ibn Dublin over the past 12 months and is looking to get in on the action. Jim has all the necessary equipment to produce the products, and potentially supply the Dublin market, however he is unsure of whether the doughnut craze is just a fad and will not last too much longer.
Bobby’s Advice
There are a number of things that Jim needs to look at here. Firstly, although this may be a fad at the moment, people also said that coffee was a fad in the 90’s and just look how that turned out. Healthy eating and fitness has also grown hugely over the past numbers of years, which was also seen as a passing craze not so long ago. 
In this situation, the proof really is in the pudding as it will inevitably come down to a) how good the product is and b) cost. There is a genuine opportunity here for Jim however it’s not without challenges:
  1. Quality - Product needs to be extremely high quality to satisfy the Dublin market
  2. Perishable product – Jim needs to ensure products are baked, shipped and sold within a certain period of time with little or no wastage
  3. Logistics – Jim needs to have a an organised transport system to ship goods from the midlands to Dublin on a daily basis
Jim should definitely look into this opportunity, but be wary that there are a lot of other factors to consider before committing to anything.
If you have a business or SME related query you would like answered - you can get in touch with Bobby each week by simply sending a short mail to [email protected]

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