5 Creative Financing Ideas to Help Your Business Stay Afloat

There is no doubt that your nerves are running ragged in this difficult economy. You’re running short on cash flow without any additional revenue streams in mind. There are some creative ways that you can gain added funds to help you stay afloat. Here are five ways for you to think about:

  1. Become a jack of all trades.

Eliminate some of your outsourced projects. Learn as much as possible about the inner workings of your business, so that when times are tough you can take on that role yourself in order to run smoothly while watching your bottom line.

  1. Apply for sponsorships.

Depending on your business venture you may be able to utilize sponsorship programs. Sponsorships can be used to cover various business expenses such as training, travel, and lodging. In return for sponsorship dollars, you may be asked to include a blurb stating this event was sponsored by XYZ Company. The blurb may also include a logo. When researching sponsorship programs, be sure to read the programs guidelines.

  1. Win a competition.

Some of the national organizations out there hold annual competitions where the prizes are substantial. This prize or seed money could be just what you’re looking for to keep your business a float. Some prize packages also include the services of a coach. What organizations do you belong to that might hold an annual competition?

  1. Let your peers fund your business.

Another funding option to think about is peer-to-peer or social financing. This is where you work with lenders through an auction-like process. The lender that “bids” the lowest interest rate is the “winner” of the borrower’s loan. There are quite a few sites online that focus on peer-to-peer lending. You should be prepared to reveal how much you want to borrow, along with what you are planning to do with the money, and the interest rate that will fit into your budget. Always do your due diligence before deciding on a company.

  1. Factor your invoices.

You have strong customer base, but they may be feeling the pinch as well making them slow to pay their invoices. You can use invoice factoring to speed up your company’s cash flow. There is a couple of things to remember about factoring. First, it is not a bank loan. The focus will be on your receivables, which is an asset and not the credit rating of your business. Secondly, invoice factoring is the purchase of your companies’ receivables. Also, keep in mind that it is not invoice discounting, which is borrowing, from your bank using your payables as the collateral. There are several companies on the web who specialize in invoice factoring. Again, be sure to do your due diligence when deciding on a company.

Let’s go find some money!

Spend the time now to analyze your current business environment. How can you utilize the various tips listed above to increase your cash flow.  Julie Barnes is a Freelance Writer focusing on her passion of entrepreneurship. Julie published “So You Want to Start a Business…Now What?” in December 2009. Julie lives and works in the Kansas City suburb of Overland Park, KS with her husband Ron and lovable dog Hank.