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Here’s what I can tell you about opening a business in British Columbia

Many people have been approaching me lately, asking how easy it is to start their own business in BC, whether it is a side hustle or a business they want to start small and grow (or both). And I get it, the economy is not great, inflation is still high, and starting a side hustle or a small business is something I always advocated for, with or without the current economic situation, inflation or recession. After I covered what it takes to open a business from a strategic point of view in another post, I gathered a few things you need to know about the people here before you make the move.


 

Community plays a big role here 

As a business owner, no matter if it is a micro business, small business or a side hustle, you want to be a part of the community. It is important not only to build trust, but also helps you gain insight into your target market’s preferences, behaviors, and pain points, enabling you to tailor your marketing strategies more effectively and to give them real and meaningful value. Listen and watch, learn, implement and build authenticity to create more value for the people in your community. Remember that while they are your target market, they can be (and should be) your marketing team. 


Credibility is important

Building credibility enhances brand reputation and influences consumer decisions, ultimately driving sales and fostering long-term relationships. One of the best tactics for building credibility is to consistently deliver on promises and provide exceptional customer experiences.  A good friend of mine once told me that his secret for business success is to under promise and over deliver. And he is right. People like good surprises and really appreciate them. When customers receive products or services that meet or exceed their expectations, they are more likely to trust the brand and recommend it to others. Additionally, leveraging social proof, such as customer testimonials, reviews, and case studies, can significantly enhance credibility by showcasing real-life experiences and demonstrating the value of your offerings while creating strong business differentiation


People want to know you are familiar with regulations 

British Columbia is known for being heavily regulated in so many aspects. It is not only important to be familiar and comply with these regulations, but it is also very important to show your target markets that you know what the regulations are and show exactly how you implement them.


People here have a sixth sense when it comes to identifying fake 

Transparency and honesty are very important for many people, and from my point of view, British Columbians take it to a whole different level. Being upfront about your products, pricing, and policies builds trust with customers and sets the foundation for a strong brand reputation. As a business strategist I can tell you that it plays a role after you do your competitor analysis and see what your competitors do. Some business owners might decide to do things or go in certain business directions just because someone else does that, and it creates some sort of an odd business identity which it is not exactly you, and not exactly them either. This gap is where the fake comes in. This is where people will feel that you are not 100% yourself, even if they can’t put their finger on exactly what is wrong. Bottom line is that when they’ll need to choose whether to buy from you or not, this feeling will be translated into hesitation. 


British Columbians appreciate nature 

People in British Columbia are surrounded by nature, and it plays a big role in everyone’s life. Therefore, I found that when you connect your business to nature, it is easier for people in BC to connect to your business. I know it sounds weird, so I’ll explain. Businesses that take an active part in protecting the environment will be able to create a deeper engagement with their community than businesses that don’t. A website that contains nature pictures here and there, will perform better than a website that doesn’t contain them. In addition to the website part, know that many people find nature inspiring, and when they sit indoors and they see nature visuals, it invokes feeling. It does something to them. It can’t be your business model or marketing strategy, but it helps. So next time you think where to shoot your next social media video, think about going outside, and if your target market is local, make sure you do it in your target market’s area, so they will be able to feel a sense of belonging. 


Key takeaway and conclusion: Opening a business is a a huge move, you already know that because everyone around you probably mentioned it when you told them you are about to make the move. But I can tell you, that it is a brilliant thing to do, not because I this is what I do for living, but because I truly believe that everyone should follow their passions and make a living out of it, whether it replaces your workplace or comes as a side income.


 

If you are considering opening a business — let’s meet for a free intro meeting. I’ll be happy to meet, listen and help where I can.


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