Q1: Many entrepreneurs in Nigeria are faced with the problem of raising funds to scale up their small businesses. What practical ways can an entrepreneur raise funds?

A1: There’s many ways physically and digitally start-ups can raise funds. Large Banks are great at supporting start-up businesses, and there’s also government schemes across the globe that can help fund start-up businesses… #SMEMeetup
Digitally, there’s the ability to crowd-fund an idea or business plan, or connect and build a relationship with investors all over the world. #SMEMeetup

Q2: Without sales, a small business will go out of business. What cost-effective marketing and sales strategy can an entrepreneur utilize in maximizing sales? #SMEMeetup

A2: A cost-effective solution for any business, is physically networking with other businesses. After all, people buy from people and that’s the most effective way to convert sales. Digitally the use of Social Media is huge and you can target consumers from all over the world with the ease of creating a simple paid for/sponsored post. Collecting data and running email campaigns is cost-effective, but can become time-consuming when converting. #SMEMeetup#SMEMeetup

Q3: With the power of Digital and New Media, many brick and mortar businesses have taken their businesses to the Internet(Websites, Social Media etc); thereby neglecting mouth-to-mouth and offline marketing. Will this hunt them later on? #SMEMeetup

A3: Not necessarily, some businesses thrive off physical marketing and some thrive on digital. They’ll be a time when everything is digital. I wouldn’t say a business would struggle, but if they are, they need to be educated on adapting to new digital techniques. #SMEMeetup

Q4: In Nigeria, many entrepreneurs love to be addressed as “CEO”. Instead of collaborating with another entrepreneur to form a bigger venture and share profits, they rather stay solo and enjoy their small returns. Share your thoughts on this. #SMEMeetup

A4: My thoughts on this and this is from behaviour in the UK. CEO when pitching is quite a nerve-racking title for the other parties. If solo, Managing Director is a much better title. CEO should only be used with a board of people in my opinion. #SMEMeetup

Q5: What routines or activities should a small business owner engage in daily, weekly or periodically; in order to scale up their ventures? #SMEMeetup

A5: Daily routines should be, checking digital marketing reports, keeping up to date with sales leads and social media enquiries. Making sure the business has a project management system and tasks are being completed. Engaging and networking with potential customers. #SMEMeetup

Q6: For prospective small business owners, what industries can you recommend for them to start their entrepreneurial journey? …or should passion about an industry be the determinant factor? …or should experience/familiarity with an industry be the reason? #SMEMeetup

Q6: I wouldn’t be able to recommend an industry for entrepreneurs and I would never do so. Passion & experience within an industry is key. Self-belief is also a huge part of being successful in their journey. If they believe in their industry, GO FOR IT! #SMEMeetup

Q7: What are your final words for entrepreneurs out there? #SMEMeetup

A7: Business is hard, stressful, and can go against you sometimes. You need strength both physically and mentally and if you have a sound business plan in place, and you try to automate as much as possible, you will be very successful. #SMEMeetup

Lolade Abimbola tweeting with the handle @voice_ofsanity, asked a question too;

How best can an entrepreneur pitch to potential investors he or she just meet randomly? #SMEMeetup

You wouldn’t randomly connect with investors. It would be a researched movement with who would be best fit for the business. The best way to pitch, give as much detail into the business background as possible and keep in contact and form relationships with investors. #SMEMeetup

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