You have decided to take the plunge and start a business of your own. Congrats! You have an ambitious goal – to create a profitable business that you can grow and sustain for the rest of your life. But, as you already know, this is not an easy feat. There is a lot of competition, and it is a vastly saturated market. But, if you are persistent and dedicated, you will succeed.
Understand The Market
You can never know too much about your chosen market. The more you know, the better. It is a common mistake for new businesses to just rush in and try to take on the world. That can work for quick-hitting businesses like coffee shops or restaurants. But, if you are going to be in the sports betting industry, you must understand what are the current trends and events that are shaping the industry.
Know Your Options
There are a lot of options when starting up a business. While there are many established sports betting companies that you can purchase a stake in, you can also branch out on your own and establish a completely new entity. When establishing a new company, one of the first things you will want to do is identify all of your options and understand what each of them entails. Essentially, there are 3 paths you can follow:
- You can become an agent or broker and, typically, receive a commission (or “kickback”) for placing winning bets. However, you will need to learn how to place bets and track them, otherwise, you will not generate sufficient income to cover your operating costs. Also, you will need to register with your local state and federal government and open a business account with your bank. These steps are the minimum requirements to start placing bets. You can do all of this in less than a month, provided you have a good support team around you.
- You can become a bookmaker and do all of the placing of bets yourself. This is the simplest route and has the least requirements for starting a business. You will not have to worry about registering with your state and federal governments or opening an operating account with your bank. You will simply need to decide how you want to operate your business – either individually or as part of a group – and start placing bets. Be mindful of the competition in your area, and do your research before making any moves. It usually takes a while for a bookmaker to develop a good reputation, so you will have to be patient.
- You can become an entrepreneur and start your own agency. An agency can represent multiple bookmakers or sports teams and is responsible for placing bets on their behalf. The advantage of an agency is that they can take on large volumes of gambling and, therefore, can offer attractive pricing for their services. However, it requires a lot of resources to establish and maintain an agency. Time and money.
Determining Your Budget
Setting a budget is essential for any business, and it is even more important when you are just breaking into the industry. You will not be able to operate a profitable business if you are continually burdened by debt. If you can, you should try to avoid taking on any significant amount of debt for your startup. Otherwise, you will be in a no-win situation. The money you save will only go to paying off loans and investors. One of the best things you can do for your business is to hire good people, provide them with decent pay and benefits, and give them the tools they need to do their jobs well. After all, nobody likes to work for cheap wages or long hours for no apparent benefit. Your employees will appreciate your consideration, and you will find that people want to work for a business that they believe in and cares for them.
Planning Your Advertising And Marketing
The vast majority of sports betting businesses are established and operate within the U.S., so it is essential that you target your advertisements at U.S. sports fans. There are many ways to reach this audience, including running ads on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, as well as Google Ads. Furthermore, you can get the word out there via press releases, sponsored posts on social media, and more. While this might seem like a lot of work, you will find that there are many willing to help you spread the word about your business. Simply ask for help and you will have dozens of people lining up to help you achieve your goals.
But, in order to make money, you must have something to sell. Whether you choose to become a bookmaker, an agent, or start your own agency, you will need to determine what types of bets you will offer and how you will sell them. For example, you can choose to specialize in college sports and NFL Football, which are the 2 most popular sports in America. Or, you can focus on major sporting events, like the Superbowl or the World Series. Whatever you choose, you will need to have a clear idea of how you will go about marketing and advertising your business.
Developing A Workflow
One of the first things you will want to do after establishing your business is to develop a workflow. Without a workflow, it is nearly impossible to keep track of the many different tasks you have to complete each day. Furthermore, since work can vary from day to day, you will want to create a checklist of the most important tasks you need to complete and ensure that nothing gets missed. A simple to-do list is a great starting point for developing your workflow. From there, you can expand and add other tasks and ideas that come to mind.
Choosing A Legal And Financial Structure
There are a few different structures you can use to operate your business. The first and most common is the sole proprietor. A sole proprietor is an individual who owns a business and is, therefore, responsible for the daily operations of the business. The second is the partnership. A partnership is simply an organization of 2 or more people who join together to form a business. A partnership can be as formal or informal as you want it to be. The key takeaway from a partnership is that you and your partners must agree on certain aspects of the business, such as the purpose, the product, and the delivery method. When establishing a partnership, you must consider what will happen if either partner dies. If you don’t have a will, then the business will be split up among the kids (or other heirs) which can cause lots of headaches. If you choose to go with the sole proprietor or partnership structures, then you should consult with an attorney who can advise you on the ins and outs of setting up a business in the U.S.
Avoiding Legal Snags
The legal snags that can arise from a business arrangement are something you want to avoid. To do this, you will need to hire an attorney who specializes in the legal aspects of startups. This is especially important if you or any of your partners (owners) have never set up a business before. An attorney can help you determine the best way to structure your business and advise you on potential legal snags. Furthermore, having an attorney on your side can help you negotiate and close deals with other businesses, investors, and government agencies. If you have a long business history, then you might not need an attorney to help you draft your contracts and agreements. But, if you are just starting out or if any of your deals are complex, then an attorney can be of great assistance and save you lots of time and money.
Establishing Bank Accounts
As mentioned above, the first thing you should do after establishing your business is to open up a business account with your bank. This is a very important account because it will allow you to receive funds into the business. Most banks will require you to put up a corporate or business credit card as collateral for the account. You will also need to consider what type of budget you are going to operate under. Are you going to limit yourself to a certain amount of cash withdrawals each month? How about deposits? If you are operating on a limited budget, then you might want to consider either lowering your daily spending or taking on some loans to get the business started. Regardless, you will need to find a way to pay your bills. The best way to do this is to put money away every day, even if it is just a little bit.