Young startup founders, here’s what you need to know before getting started!
So you’ve decided to finally launch your business. First off, congratulations! That’s a big step. Secondly, good luck. Starting your own startup is intimidating, to say the least. For most entrepreneurs, it entails entering unknown terrain, crossing their fingers and hoping for the best. With that in mind, here’s our best advice for a young, first-time startup founder:
Make sure the business idea excites you
Does your business idea make you want to jump out of bed every morning? Perhaps not. But it should make you want to constantly put in the work and make the most of its potential. After all, according to American entrepreneur Jeff Bussgang, “Your efforts are clearly and directly linked to the value and success of the enterprise. You must therefore be someone who can care deeply about not just your own work but all aspects of your company.” The end goal is to have a business that no one can run better than you. So, to find a business idea that excites you, ask yourself questions like, “What are the kind of customers I want to serve? What are my favorite brands and websites? What is a product or service I enjoy?”
Passion for your business idea won’t just help you stay motivated but also appease investors. As per a study by the Journal of Business Venturing, angel investors and venture capitalists value product passion. On the other hand, investors with more entrepreneurial experience value entrepreneurial passion. All things considered, passion for your business is integral.
Do adequate market research
The lack of market need for their offering is the second-biggest reason why most startups fail. Adequate market research can help mitigate the risk. What do consumers need right now? Who are your competitors? What prices are they offering? What does the current market lack? These are the questions that market research reveals answers to. It helps you create a lucrative product that will sell. It also reassures investors that you are committed to the success of your startup and understand market requirements. Many founders avoid doing thorough market research for the fear of learning that their product is not profitable. However, learning that through research is better than learning it after you invest huge sums of money into your product or service.
Raise the money you need
It’s no secret that your startup won’t take off without adequate money. You can choose to bootstrap, like many do, or you can take the fundraising route. For the latter, start early—before your product or service is ready. Reach out to friends and family, early-stage angel investors and startup accelerators. The CEO of Nexford University, Fadl Al Tarzi, wrote in a blog post, “Deciding which funding route makes the most sense for you and your startup will vary depending on your circumstances.” These circumstances include your short-term and long-term goals, your financial requirements, and the like.
With the funds you raise, you can start building prototypes for your products and your team. If you want the right resources to propel your business forward, go get the money!
Interact with other entrepreneurs
Researchers believe that networking with other entrepreneurs is “particularly beneficial” when you are starting a new business and want to achieve a foundational lift-off. According to the research, When you interact with other entrepreneurs, you can work towards gaining access to more resources and “maximizing common advantages”. What’s more? You can attract assets that you otherwise would not, such as brand reputation and consumer contacts. To get started with networking, seek out mentors and advisors in your industry. Attend industry workshops, events and conferences, and make a lasting impression.
Build a great team
A study on new venture teams shows that 60% of new ventures fail due to problems, such as miscommunication, disagreements and more, within the team. When you start building your team, ensure that every team member boasts equal parts soft skills and hard skills. While knowledge is important, so is the ability to present that knowledge well. In addition to that, a shared vision is essential to startup success; make sure your team members are on the same page as you are at all times.
Founding Attorney Rocco Cozza’s best advice for a young, first-time startup founder is to “just start”. He notes, “The time will never be perfect. You will make more mistakes than you can anticipate. But in the end, the most successful entrepreneurs are the ones willing to start and learn along the way.” So, don’t wait; get started.
Wondering how long it will take your startup to become successful? Read this article to find out!
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