Posted by: Daniel Boterhoven on Fri Apr 16
Many people want to jump onto the bandwagon and achieve success without much thought about where best to begin.
With the world’s knowledge at our fingertips, it’s easy to search for existing marketplace problems or needs and find a solution through a scalable business model. Both the term startup and entrepreneurship have been used interchangeably in the past. Where they differ is in their scope.
Entrepreneurship is an umbrella term used to refer to new businesses that include self-employment and small business with no intentions of growth. Startups, on the other hand, are expected to grow beyond its founder and become a large corporation.
Therefore, a business cannot be called a startup if it has no intentions of growing which leave many entrepreneurs in a bit of a conundrum; how do you effectively grow a business?
A value proposition is simply the value that a product or service offers to its customers. How that value will be delivered also falls under its definition. Without a value prop, customers and investors would find it hard to believe how the product or service that a business offering will add value or solve a problem or address a need.
In order for a business to grow effectively, they need to be clear on what they bring to the table that no other company offers. A startup with a strong value proposition will find it easier to communicate and relate with their customers.
Coming up with an effective value proposition involves analyzing the behavior of customers, their preferences, and other nuances. Lastly, a good value proposition should be limited in a single phrase or sentence, easy to remember but conveys the entire message.
Having a smart and strong value proposition won’t be as effective if it falls on deaf ears. For this reason, it is equally important to know who your target audience is. Without this information, a startup can waste money and resources spreading their message on the wrong crowd.
To find your target audience, you have to do a survey. This can be done through email blasts or newsletters. Some will seek the help of firms to do market research. It can also help to pay attention to the kind of customers your competition has. Who are they marketing to and which of their products are the most popular? Through your network, ask for feedback and opinions. Sometimes, the best advice comes from an unlikely source.
Don’t discount your competitors; they might be able to shed light on some problems you are trying to solve. If they are succeeding, find out what methods they are using to accomplishing their goals and incorporate them into your own practice.
There are many entrepreneurs who fear to scrutinize their competition because they might discover that their products might not compare. But facing reality might help you improve what you offer to your customers and in turn, lead you to success.
There are a number of stories involving pioneering startups who managed to find a solution for a problem, market it effectively only to be overtaken by others when they failed to notice that other businesses have taken their solution and made a better product out of it. The startup industry is not somewhere one should be content resting on their laurels.
A crucial aspect of growing a business is looking for the right people who share your values and aspiration. This is not an easy task and many companies continue to struggle to search for the right hires that can do great work.
Many companies widen their pool of hires by considering remote employees from all across the world. It is important to look for people with similar values and culture that can blend well with your working environment.
If possible, conduct interviews face to face and ask questions to know that they can join your team seamlessly. Don’t look for clones of yourself in your hires. Be open to opinions and criticism. A fresh point of view can do wonders for the company’s growth.
The temptation to scale immediately and as quickly as possible might be a strong one but be smart on how you do it. Growing the business prematurely at the expense of other important resources can lead to the business’ downfall.
When scaling, monitor how you spend, try to avoid racking up too much debt and set a limit for your overhead. Scaling can even start small, such as investing more time on social media. Companies such as Galaxy Marketing have helped many businesses increase their visibility through their socials. Many startups have also opted out of renting an office space and chose instead to work remotely, or in co-working spaces.
There are more ways to help your startup grow effectively and those I mentioned are only a few of them. Consider this list as the first few steps in a long road to success.
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