Every startup doesn’t make it big out there and there is a reason behind that. Thousands of startups start their journey every single day but only a few make it. Around 90% of startups fail to actually see a profit and get shut down within one year of operation. How can you make sure that you are in the remaining 10% of businesses with your one?
Let’s have a look at 11 secrets of successful startups. Apply these to your business and you will see positive results.
1. Perfect Business Plan
Do not just jump into the business without a proper long term and short term plan. Make sure that you know your target and how to achieve it with small goals. It is very important that you create a mission and a vision statement for your company which will guide your company through tough times.
2. Know Your Numbers
Always make sure that you know the numbers of your business. Numbers like customer acquisition cost, sales and margins will decide the success or the failure of your business. Never assume a number when you are running your operation. You might think that you are running on profit but the actual result might be different. Therefore, use proper documentation tools to document and calculate all your business data.
3. Marketing is the Key
No matter what product or service you are selling, you have to invest in marketing. When you are in your early days, try to invest as much as possible on the marketing side of your business. You might lose profit on short terms but the end result will take care of everything. Also, proper marketing will keep your cash flow positive all year.
4. Don’t Lose Much Share
This is a common mistake that a lot of startups do! As this decade is known as the decade of startups and entrepreneurs, many think that selling shares and bringing investors in will result in something better which is not always the case. You should not lose the share of your business unless you are desperate for money. One share can worth a lot more after ten years and you do not want to regret later. Consider this as a marathon and not a sprint. That will give your business longevity.
5. Never Assume
As a business owner, you should never assume about anything. The only thing that you can depend on is the actual fact. Many business owners make this mistake. They either get influenced by their friends, family & colleagues or by the competition. Even if you see your competition do something, you should not immediately try to do anything about it as it can cause trouble.
Always depend on actual stats and facts rather than assumptions.
6. Look at Competition
Researching your competition is vital for the success of your business. You should always be one step ahead of your competitors. Remember that your competitors are doing the same and researching about you. Therefore, consider this as a game of chess and plan accordingly.
For almost any business, competition is the biggest of all threats. If you are not careful enough about this, your whole business might end!
7. Build Relationships
Do not look for immediate benefits when you are building relationships. Try to be yourself when you are building relationships and help people if it is possible on your behalf. These relationships will turn into something better in the future.
You have to build relationships with all of your connections as a business. Therefore, do not leave out your competitors, consumers, or suppliers. You need to have good relations with everyone for different reasons. For example, the suppliers will stick with you if they have a decent enough relationship with your company. On the other hand, you need to know about your competitors and the relationship helps.
8. Use Technology
Is it important to think about technology when you are running a business? Definitely! Even if you are not running a tech company, do not ignore the power of technology and social media. A lot of people mix technology with digital marketing where these are completely different terms. Technology can help you automate different steps of your business to make production faster and the company more profitable.
9. Ask for Help
Never assume that you know everything about running a business only because you invented the idea. You should always look for expert suggestions and advice. If you don’t find experts for free, you can always go ahead and hire consultants. Many businesses fail because of the mindset of their owners. The owners think that as they have invented the business, they now know everything in that industry, which is never the case, especially, if you are into the IT sector. If you have less idea about it, then the best possible solution is to find an IT consultant who can help you with all the technicalities.
10. Focus on Strengths
As a business, you should focus on your strength and strength only. If you are producing two products or services and if one of them is bad, you should get rid of that and focus on improving the one that you are already good at. This might create a temporary void in your business in terms of profit, but this will help you have a service or product which is better than anybody out there.
After you make that happen, you can charge a bit extra for the quality that you are offering and take back the amount that you have lost in the initial phase.
11. Continue Learning
Never stop the learning process. No matter whether you are new or ten years old in the industry, there is something new happening every other day and you should always keep on learning. It is the knowledge that matters the most at the end of the day and there is nothing that can compete against it.
If you follow these 11 rules, the chance is less likely that you will end up losing your business. These are secrets that every successful business follows. Apart from these eleven golden rules, always make sure that you are staying top of the current changes in terms of technology, rules & regulations, and customer mindset. This will keep your business running!