There have been thousands of words written about the path and journey of entrepreneurship. But it is worth listening to the experiences of others who have also walked this path, with all its ups as well as downs. These five pillars of entrepreneurial success are based on my experiences with failures and successes.
1. Do not follow the giants.
Do not follow the global brands and giants. Startup companies shouldn’t use what they do and don’t have as a strategy. Startups have a shorter runway, which is how long your business can continue to operate before running out of money. It’s not worth following the giants and going it alone. Startup strategies should be unique and founders need to understand that you can’t do everything at once.
Startups should aim to gain market strength, footprint, and, above all, build a natural audience. This is not possible if you follow the same steps as giants. You need to find a market gap, or a zone that is neutral. This will allow you to penetrate. Even if your product isn’t new, you can still add your unique touch. Markets almost always accept new startups regardless of where you deliver them. It’s all about how you grow and what quality you offer.
2. Multiple channels can be created
Delivering your product or service through one platform or commercial arm is one of the greatest problems. If you can see the business from the outside, selling through an online platform can be a good idea. You can sell internationally if you start small. They have your brand at their disposal. They have complete control.
You should first create your space and then you can get steady consumer engagement. Then, you can add third-party space to grow your volume. You can do this so that even if the third-party cuts you off, your business remains intact.
3. You can build a foundation and then capitalize on it.
Entrepreneurs are ambitious. After seeing success, we want to expand and grow. Unsupported growth and expansion often lead to a rapid fall, and sometimes even a complete collapse. Only after you have established a solid foundation, can you expand. You must capitalize on your successes, but first think about what you have achieved and how you can keep moving in the same direction. You must always have a solid foundation and pillars upon which to rely, and avoid the “fast track” path.
4. Your A-team.
Solo or as a solo show, it is unlikely that you will succeed. Although you may be the brand ambassador or face of the company with the proper delegation, it is possible to fail easily without the support of a team.
Richard Branson, the British business magnate, is an excellent example of this. He relied on talented people to establish and manage all the companies that make up Virgin Group. Branson once stated, “Many people believe that an entrepreneur means someone who works alone, overcomes challenges, and brings his idea to market by sheer force of personality.” This is completely false. Few entrepreneurs–scratch that: almost no one–ever achieved anything worthwhile without help. You must be able to collaborate, delegate and connect in order to succeed in business.
5. Create the brand identity.
Once you have built a solid team and established your ground, it is time to focus on the social aspects of building your brand. Humanizing your business is the next step. Once your team is established, don’t be afraid of giving up the management aspect of your business. Your time should be spent being the face of your brand. You can always find new companies to enter your channels, increase your market share and offer better quality and lower prices. Only your character can stop that.
Consumers should associate your brand with a person and a face. They value the story and want to be able to trust the person behind the product. This allows them to connect with you better and generates more interest and engagement. We don’t often like abstract things. We prefer to see a human face associated with a brand in order to appreciate its growth.
Entrepreneurship is a journey that will bring you many obstacles and challenges. These include cashflow problems, too much involvement in operations, and being in crisis mode. These five pillars will help you build the foundation that will propel your startup. As a startup, you should act like a yacht and not as a cruise boat. You’ll be able to move quickly and easily to get there.