Starting your own business is often a learn-as-you go process, but the smarter decisions you make early on, the better chance of creating a sustainable business model.
Greig Jansen, founder and CEO of Cape Town based PURA Soda Beverage Company, has seen his business grow quickly, having launched in 2017 and now exporting to over 13 countries around the world. He offers five pieces of advice to those wanting to take on the entrepreneurial challenge.
- Solutions for a challenge
Jansen explains, “Think about what your business idea will solve. Your start-up should fill a gap in a certain market. Ask yourself why you are opening your own business and think about if there is something that you wish was there that you couldn’t already get. Understanding your motives will help you create a brand and market your company. Know what challenges your target customers face and how you can solve them.”
“When we were developing our business, we conducted extensive consumer research which found that there was a need to develop a heathier alternative to carbonated soft drinks,” he says. “We developed our better-for-you soft drink that is low in sugar, contains all natural ingredients and comes in six delicious flavours in direct response to these insights. Our product therefore gives the customers a way of enjoying a soda that is far more natural and healthier than a conventional fizzy drink, but still very tasty.”
- Take note and listen
“It is important to listen to what others have to say,” says Jansen. “Your friends, family, peers, and even yourself. Absorb everything you can when it comes to things that have to do with your entrepreneurial goals.” He continues, “Keep notes from everything you come across to develop a detailed business plan. Don’t ignore the advice from other business owners. Smart entrepreneurs learn from the mistakes other business owners have made.”
- Keep it simple
“It is tempting for many entrepreneurs to get ready to run with their idea once they have developed it,” says Jansen. “However it is important not to let your concept snowball into something too complicated. As a start-up business owner, it is better to start small and narrow your focus. You don’t need all the bells and whistles of a giant company. It is far easier to add to your business as it grows.”
- Just get started
Starting your own venture is all about trial and error. Working through the process to find what works for you and what resonates with potential customers. ”Unfortunately, excuses only slow you down from realising your dreams,” cautions Jansen. “Many people have aspirations of starting their own business, however they are burdened with a fear of failing. In many cases, a self-starter has a lot to lose and it is safe to say that worrying about the risks is normal.”
- Go all in
“A business is not worth building unless you are ready to ‘go all-in’,” Jansen advises. “To be successful, you will have to put in long hours, constantly innovate and do what it takes to get traction. You will need to devote 100% of your times to build the business if you want to have any chance of success.”
ABOUT THE PURA BEVERAGE COMPANY
Trailblazer PURA Soda is the better-for-you soda that’s making local and international waves. With the philosophy that everyone should try to “live a little PURA”, they believe that if you are in a position to make a difference, then you should. No grand gestures, just small things that people can all do every day to make the world a better place.
With roots in Cape Town, South Africa, PURA Soda has cemented its position as a global brand, exporting to 13 countries including the US, UAE and UK. In 2019, they won kudos at the Aurora International Taste Challenge, thrilling expert tasters and being named as the “Best Tasting Non-alcoholic Beverage”. Continuing this winning streak, PURA Soda was then named as the “Best Cold Beverage” at Product of the Year 2020, the world’s largest consumer-voted award for product innovation.
Offering six pioneering new flavours, this bold soda delivers big on taste and refreshment, without the bad stuff. With just a sprinkle of sugar, all-natural flavours and zero colourants everyone can live a little PURA.