How to launch a brokerage and not fail
Author: Albina Zhdanova
This blog has already talked about starting a White Label brokerage from scratch and the steps that brokers can take to avoid common mistakes. Today, we are taking a slightly different approach. We will discuss the skills and experience that would help start a brokerage company and not fail.
Get some experience
We’ve seen an unprecedented spike in interest towards starting a brokerage over 2020 and the first half of 2021. And there is no surprise there. Thousands of people found themselves stuck at home and began investing. It took little time for potential brokers to jump on this opportunity and start or expand their businesses.
If you’ve experienced a similar desire but do not have enough experience - close the knowledge gap first. Yes, there is much more demand today, but the supply is also bursting. You will need to find a niche, build the right workflow, and offer a competitive advantage to succeed.
Depending on your previous workplaces, you might want to get hired by a different broker or liquidity provider to gain a new perspective. Alternatively, it also helps if you’ve worked in different positions within a brokerage. Anything that helps you avoid tunnel vision and see the big picture will contribute to you running the brokerage better.
Choose your market
Many factors influence a brokers’ decision to operate in one country or another. Market entry costs play a significant role: the licensing requirements, level of competition, and earnings potential should all be considered. Once you have narrowed down a few options, research the cultural nuances and established business practices. Unfortunately, it is common among both SMB and Enterprise companies to enter a new market, oblivious to the cultural codes and not reach the results they expected.
Draft out a business plan and do the math
The brokerage industry is very finance-intensive. Even if you go into the market with mild capital requirements, plenty of things will need investments. Starting with software licenses and hosting to marketing campaigns - you will be expected to pay large sums of money without necessarily getting anything in return for the first few months. So it is best if you create a business plan and set up a budget. We recommend looking at having funds to cover at least one year of running a company without income. It is better to be safe than sorry when it comes to brokerage firms.
Networking is vital. Whether you will be looking for staff, outsourced consultants, or a mentor, having a vast network within the industry will make a difference. People work with people, so the better you position yourself, the more chances you’ll have to find help and advice when you need it.
Build a website
Having a website is essentially like having a 24/7 advertisement. A structured, informative, and user-friendly website will work just like your sales associate, if not better. Make sure you put information about yourself, your location, and your contact details. Potential clients need to trust you, and it is more likely that they will entrust you with their hard-earned money if they actually understand who you are. It will also help your website show up in search if you keep updating it with quality content. Try posting regular news and blog articles about your company, industry, and anything else that might interest your clients. SEO is out of fashion nowadays, as many firms look at social media for promotion. Yet, it remains an effective, organic method in scoring leads.
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