It’s a common myth that you need a lot of money to start a business. If you’re wary about borrowing a lot of money – or have failed to secure funding from a bank – but want to start a business anyway, then the good news is that it is entirely possible. Here are 5 tips to start your Hong Kong business with smaller capital and ensure you make it through that all-important first year.

#1 Make The Business Something You Know

It’s easier to succeed in business when the business is one based around what you know and what you can do. You want to rely on outside sources as little as possible. There’s no need to hire a consultant or bring in an assistant when the business is something you have a lot of expertise and experience in. This drastically reduces how much you need to spend. There are times when the only thing you need to become an entrepreneur is the knowledge and expertise you already possess.

#2 Spread the Word

You need as many people as possible to know about the new business. Tell all your family, friends, contacts, and even past colleagues. Send out emails, make calls, and spread the word through social media. Get your friends and family to help spread the word, and ask old business contacts to tell their own professional contacts about the brand. This is a form of grassroots marketing that can go a long way and doesn’t cost a penny.

#3 Don’t Spend Unnecessarily

There are a lot of expenses involved with starting a business, and some of these can’t be avoided. Overspending is something that can be avoided though. Think about business cards for example; you can spend a lot of money buying a lot of metallic business cards, or you can spend a much smaller amount on traditional business cards that still get the job done. It’s vital that you save as much money early on. Frugality can be the determining factor in whether your business succeeds or fails.

#4 Avoid Credit Card Debt

When you start a business you need to be very smart about how you handle credit. The costs of computers, furniture, phones, and supplies all add up. Rather than buying everything at once through a credit card, finance your expenses through your company revenue. Getting rid of the burdens and stress of credit card debt makes your business much more likely to succeed.

#5 Sweat Equity

When your business first starts up, you’re going to be working around the clock doing as much as possible by yourself. The good news is that all of this hard work, and all those long hours managing the business and ensuring growth won’t be wasted. You’re putting the work in to build a brand, and all of your hard work makes the business more valuable. This is known as “sweat equity” and it can really come into play when you’re ready to bring in a partner or sell off some of your company.

The more work you can do by yourself, and the more free marketing and advertising you can take advantage of, the lesser the cost to run your business. Running a business on less capital is all about reducing expenses and cleverly managing your money. You should do just fine as long as you avoid frivolous spending and know what you’re doing.