Situated in the northeastern region of the United States, Maine is also nicknamed "The Pine Tree State" and “Vacationland”. Its capital is Augusta, while the most populous city in the state is Portland. According to a 2017 estimate established by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, Maine’s total gross product was $61.4 billion and its per capita personal income for 2017 was $45,072, being 31st in the nation. Recent statistics indicate that currently the unemployment rate is situated at 3.0%. This means that there is a quite tight job market that is creating more challenges for employees and workers.
Top industries in Maine
§ Real estate
§ Rental and leasing
§ Government related enterprises
Large companies that maintain headquarters in the state of Maine include Fairchild Semiconductor (South Portland), IDEXX Laboratories (a large veterinary biotech company in Westbrook) and the famous outdoor supply retailer L.L. Bean (Freeport).
According to the market analysis, there are a few business investment opportunities that could be great for entrepreneur that are ready to become owners. These are a few of them:
o Gas station or convenience store
o Fishing equipment and accessories shop
o Mechanic repair and service workshop
o Electronics repair work shop
o Seafood and frozen foods shop
o Leather production business
o Metal fabrication business
o Guest house business
Small businesses are more important for the state of Maine than you may think. The Small Business Administration (SBA) revealed that the 143,142 small businesses in Maine represent 97% of all employers in Maine and make up 58.7% of the state's workforce.
Choose the right idea for you and stick to it
When deciding on what business you would like to own, you need to consider your skills and passions. Owning a company that keeps you motivated and very engaged can provide you a great income in no-time. Try to fill a market need and brings something extra in order to clearly contrast your competitors.
Choosing an idea is only the beginning. Having a great name that perfectly reflects your company’s values, products or services is essential. Something funny or catchy is always easy to remember and that is the whole point.
Tons of research
Knowing your competition will keep you ahead and your company will be able to gain customers quickly. It is much easier to learn from the success and failures of your competitors than to do it all blindfolded. Finding out about the companies’ backgrounds is a great starting point that can be more revealing than you may think. Attending industry conferences or consulting with your suppliers can get you more information than just googling a company.
Another important aspect when doing research, is to slowly but surely create a suitable and complex business plan that perfectly suits your future enterprise.
Advertising & Marketing
According to the SBA (Small Business Administration) advertising is a key element when it comes to a business’s development path. You’ll even find this on their website: "Advertising, if done correctly, can do wonders for your product sales, and you know what that means: more revenue and more success for your business."
Investing in the right marketing tools and ditching traditional advertising methods could be game-changing for your business. The most efficient and effective methods are – luckily for entrepreneurs – free or come at a very small price. Using Social Media and hiring an expert at least in the first few months of operations could be vital.
v Create and maintain your brand’s identity
v Inform prospective customers about your services and products
v Occasionally remind them about different bonuses and offers
v Properly promote your company to future prospects and even investors
v Always try to attract new customer by widening your target audience
v Understand your target market and use marketing methods suitable for them
v Attend industry conventions and offer products at different fairs
v Figure out if online or offline marketing suits your business model
v Create a strong online presence
Choose a business structure
The business entity that you pick will ultimately define the ownership type and the owner/s’ responsibilities, each structure having different advantages. Consulting a tax practitioner – which can be either an accountant, attorney, enrolled agent etc. – may be the best idea if you are a first time owner or have little knowledge about taxes and business-related procedures.
These are the most commonly used business structures:
The simplest and most common form of business, the sole proprietorship is a company owned and operated by a single person. The earnings are reported on the individual’s income tax return. Owners usually make estimated tax payments, because the income taxes are not automatically withdrawn from their business income.
This type of business is owned by at least two individuals who each contribute money, property, labor or skills. A partnership is not a taxable entity, which means that each partner has to report the earnings – similarly to sole proprietorships.
A legal entity created under state or federal law with an existence separate and apart from its members or stakeholders, a corporation reports business income on a corporate income tax return, and may need to file estimated tax payments. Additionally, corporations also have reporting and registration obligations to the Secretary of State.
S Corporations are not usually taxable entities, shareholder including their share of income (or loss) on their personal income tax return – as partnerships and sole proprietorships.
Limited Liability Company – LLC
This type of entity is a business typically owned by one or more individuals. It has combined aspects of partnerships and corporations. LLCs must register with the Secretary of State.
Finance your business
Whether you have money put aside or your family or friends have the opportunity to help you, you need to find a sure funding source. Besides the two options previously stated, there are a few great methods that you could use.
Crowdfunding – a popular way to get funds by using an online platform especially created for this purpose. Usually, you have to create a campaign that describes your business, product or service and people who appreciate your idea can donate.
Angel investing – angel investors are typically individuals who have substantial capital and want to invest in great business ideas. They either get a share of your company or just simply donate the funds in exchange for advertising.