5 Steps to your Startup’s Niche
from Entrepreneur.com 01 May 15 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
As an entrepreneur, you have a keen eye for recognizing “unmet needs”, market trends & potential business opportunities – regardless of the industry. You need a critical research, passion and the willingness to accept the burden to win big. Here are five ways we fused our passion & market opportunity, to succeed in an unfamiliar market:
1. Set your Expectations high. First, you need to create a Mission Statement of what you hope to get out of starting a business. Pursue fulfilling work that aligns with your passion. Defining a few deal breakers will help you weed out the duds. I knew I wanted to help people and sell products rather than services.
2. Never stop Researching. You can’t discover “unmet needs” and propose “viable solutions” without continuously studying the ins & outs of an industry. Investigate key industry players + national & international trends to further expand your knowledge base. Learn enough to sense possibilities, then conduct more research before acting on that information, whether you move forward or course-correct. Listening is also a crucial component of research. You will only identify gaps by listening to the market and responding to it. Conduct interviews and surveys to hear directly from key stakeholders. Make learning a part of your life, not a task you check off. Constant improvement is the only way to stay competitive.
3. Find & define your Great Idea. Unearthing your brilliant idea is more about observation than innovation. Along with industry research, seek out inspiration in a bigger landscape. Visit VC & Angel investor websites, such as Tech Coast Angels. Read publications such as the PricewaterhouseCoopers MoneyTree Report to learn which companies are getting funded. Look to other entrepreneurs, and discover how they’re building successful companies by perceiving things differently. When sorting through your ideas, make sure to hone a “unique selling point” for your idea. You don’t necessarily need to dream up a brand-new invention; you can also enhance an existing idea. You might be faster, cheaper or do it better. Just make sure you can differentiate yourself.
4. Build a great Team. The advisors, employees & organizations you work with, will play a defining role in your success (or failure). Hire passionate, experienced team members who will ride out the challenges & instability of the early startup days. Work with the best manufacturers or partners to ensure a great product & customer experience. Keep in touch with your old network – even as you develop a new one – for their feedback. Clarifying your business’s Mission will lead you to the right people to build with.
5. Take the Risk to get the Reward. In every step, you have to be bold enough to overcome internal fears and external discouragement. Don’t be afraid to learn something new or ignore the naysayers. Of course, you can’t do it alone. With a great team by your side, you can compensate for your shortcomings and thrive in any market. No magic formula will point you to a winning business idea, but repeating these steps helped me build a business I love. Dive deep into an industry, & keep your eyes open for opportunities. Find where your passion intersects with a deep-seated void, and you’ll be the perfect person to fill it.
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