What Does it Take to Build and Scale a Startup?

It’s not the typical industrial era where most people settle for a safe job. The shift is clearly visible. People don’t want to trade their talent for only a paycheck — they’d rather leverage their skills to realise the potential to build an entity that they will be proud of.

The digital era has opened immense opportunities. Millennial's find it cumbersome to go along with the traditional clock in and clock out corporate culture. Most youngsters are eager to put together a startup, and build a scalable business model. A business model that demands the least investment and have the potential to multiply revenue over a time period. If not revenue, to the least a personal brand that characterizes their passion and commitment to a certain cause.

Entrepreneurs who are planning to venture into the business world should consider adopting a business strategy that encompasses digital transformation. With the buyer’s journey getting more complex, designing a customer centric business model is much needed than to head on with a product oriented strategy.

Build for Customers — A Mantra Yet To Master

Customers! A simple strategy most entities tend to believe they have already mastered.

The most fascinating fact about a customer centric strategy is that if you listen carefully then you could hear them say whether to stay in the market, pivot, or to frame an exit strategy.

It’s a fallacy that everyone wants your product. Don’t let the rookie impulse get the best. Never rush and invest in a product that you alone believe has a high commercial value.

People buy from people they trust. For a startup, being a new entity in the market, it takes time and effort to build trust. The whole business process gets much easier when you are able to create a strong relationship with your target customers.

It’s not about the product. It’s about how well the product meets the demands of an existing market. In a highly competitive and dynamic world, survival means to stay as close to the customers.

Sustainable Business Model

A sustainable business model well poised to accommodate the needs of a demanding market tends to outperform its alternate solutions in the long run. Don’t fall for the GBF (grow Big Fast) strategy. Not every business idea could radically attract customers.

Don’t synergize for the short term (not that short term goals doesn’t matter. Set milestones). Let’s look ahead and build for a better tomorrow. Nobody could promise you an overnight success. When you ready to invest your efforts make sure that the efforts are well streamlined to serve a market to the fullest. As a startup, you may be limited by budget and the resource at hand. At the same time how you deliver / service the market could make a profound impact.

Be ready to experiment! Try different strategies. Understand what works well within the niche and what activities are not adding value to the business.

Pivot when it’s necessary. Create a reliable business model that generates steady revenue. Replicate your winning business model rather emulate someone else strategy.

Enriched Startup Ecosystem

The startup ecosystem in most countries has become more lenient. Enabling entrepreneurs to kick start their business in days. Even the governments are meticulously taking initiatives to inspire and nurture entrepreneurial spirits, grooming youngsters to enter into the business world.

The contribution of entrepreneurs to the economy of a nation is indisputable. The young generation is in a race to build the future. You cannot stand alone and build an empire. You need the world around you to work with the same dedication and commitment to accomplish the task at hand.

Having a scalable business idea could attract good investors. Investors who could realize the potential of the business model in generating revenue over a period of time.

Viability of a Product to Meet the Market Demand — MVP

Don’t let the hunches, beliefs, and hopes cloud your judgement. Your business is not just about you. It’s more than what you believe as an individual. Often, it happens that the idea that you firmly believe lacks the strength to lure commercial value to the business. Don’t go down the path where the product that you built is not suitable for the market that you envisage.

Build products that tend to have demand in the market. As a startup entrepreneur, you need to understand the demands of an existing market, forecast what comes your way, and be prepared to capitalize with the right solution.

Designing and developing products that has zero market demand is not going to help. With digital transformation you are open to a new world where you can easily create a test product, release the test version and understand the market response.

You need to validate the product before you release it to the market. In a dynamic world where most technology/ product is labelled obsolete, ever before it reaches the end user, understanding the market pulse could be critical.

We live in a dynamic world where products and solutions fail to perform as expected, even after tantalizing opportunities explode at the doorstep.

Prepare and Be Ready to Accommodate Change

What works today, doesn’t seem to be a right fix tomorrow. To triumph in a highly volatile consumer driven world, you need to make sure that you are open to explore new ideas and opportunities. The technological revolution has brought a lot of changes to the market, forthcoming days will be much tougher. The real change is how modern technologies radically influence the customer’s behavior. Regardless to the conundrum, the business should be ready to adapt and adjust to the shifting tides, closer to people.

Digital transformation has significantly influenced how a customer interacts with the business. Don’t shrink to the traditional business model, when the whole market is shifting to the virtual space. Build your presence on channels where your customers engage the most.

Your brand needs to be your customer’s voice. Tweak your business model in such a way that it resonates with the customer’s voice. The customer is an important stakeholder who plays a profound role in determining the success of your business. So, it’s better if you make room to accommodate change and then create a customer centric strategy.

When Transforming Your Business to a Digital Age — Make Sure you Find Room for Automation

Startups that are labour intensive could eat away a good percentage of your budget in the long run. Consider an example, AI driven automated chat-bots that works without any human intervention has gained significant acceptance in the startup ecosystem. Instant response chat-bots are one good example.

Integrating automation across the business will help streamline processes. Technology driven operational tools could manage rudimentary tasks, on the other side, the continuous monitoring systems could routinely check the efficiency of an ongoing process. The real time feedback from these tools could be utilized to refine the efficiency of the process. Making sure that snags are addressed at the earliest and the quality is well rooted at every stage of the business.

Versatile Team

It’s no wonder that great business is built by great teams. A versatile team with the determination and focus to establish a genuine solution that addresses the concerns of a market prevails. To build and scale a business you need to be surrounded by the right people. People who are capable enough to make decisions on your absence.

What Does it Take to Build and Scale a Startup? was originally published in Hacker Noon on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Publication date: 
04/25/2019 - 13:31

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