3 Startup Struggles That Founders Must Overcome And How To Overcome Them
Whoever says that starting a business is going to be a sweet ride must have to go for a mental checkup. The reality of the situation is that it could be interesting and challenging and depressing depending on your perception of it. To bring this home, these startup struggles that founders must overcome will come in handy.
The fact that they are struggles just means they have to be conquered. Your success as an entrepreneur is a function of the battles you win and the obstacles you conquer. What doesn’t kill a man makes him stronger.
Don’t get it wrong; when you overcome these obstacles, you don’t just become successful immediately. The implication is that you are on your way to becoming successful.
Show me a top entrepreneur who has not exorcized these demons in form startup struggles that founders overcome and I will show a wheelbarrow that has a seat belt. That is the reality of being an entrepreneur; you keep winning and reinventing yourself.
It is enough. The intro is enough. Don’t you agree with that? Let us get to the main meal. We have had enough appetizers already. Let us find out the startup struggles founders must overcome. They are many but we will focus on 3 points which will be all-encompassing or at least look like it is. We shall also suggest ways to overcome them.
3 Startup Struggles That Founders Must Overcome
Getting your value out there for your customers
The major people needed to drive your startup are not the investors, the venture capitalists or the loan agencies. They are the customers. Your customers are the livewire of your business, the blood that flows in the veins of your business and the only reason you will ever be rich.
And for your customers to follow you, your products or services must be value-laden. It must be able to solve their problems.
It is one thing to let people know about your business, that one is very easy. Any kind of advertisement can just handle that. The bulk of the work is communicating the value of the product or service to them. In that, we have our first obstacle.
If you understand that customers are essential to your success, then you will understand why communicating the value of what you are offering to them is one of the startup struggles that founders must overcome. Well, let us look at how we can actually overcome this struggle.
The way to overcome it
Wang, the co-founder of Ovid has this to say about how they overcame theirs.
“We would come up with multiple ways of explaining our service and then test it on our grandparents and their friends, test, and repeat. It not only improved the clarity of our pitch but also helped us prioritize information which at the time seemed counterintuitive. Over time, our findings led us to develop a library of educational content that helps walk consumers through each step of the process. Today, not only has our content become crucial in converting customers, but is now also helping to drive new traffic and opportunities to our business.”
There are other ways you can do that. You can start a referral program, pay social media influencers and handle all online and offline marketing. But the most important thing is making sure that your product has value in the first place and then the machinery you put in place will have confidence in communicating that.
This only becomes a problem if you intend to be funded by angel investors and venture capitalists. It becomes irrelevant if you have the money to fund your startup. I cannot begin to tell you the importance of startup funds to the success of your business.
But I want to assume that you need investors to run this startup. You must understand that these people have top financial advisers who will look into your proposal once it is ready.
How do you get investors? You will need to have a great business idea. It is quite easy for a great business idea to attract funding.
But it is going to take more than just a great idea to get funds. Other factors are involved. Read up how to attract investors for your business and you will get a perfect idea. Let us look at how we can solve this problem.
How to overcome it
I’m going to share with you what JP Marony, the CEO of an alternative investment fund, thinks about overcoming the obstacles of finding investors.
“One of the toughest challenges I had, in the beginning, was explaining to investors exactly what we do and how we make money for them. The reason for this is because it was such a new business model or a new approach, not the fact of generating leads and not the fact of generating investment returns but the combination of the two. My strategy of digital marketing arbitrage was something, as far as I know, no one else has ever done.”
“This is the simplest way I was able to explain it to potential investors. You buy advertising on the internet, send people to a page and when they fill out a form, you get paid. The difference between what you spend and what you’re getting paid is your profit, which you use to pay your investors. But, it took me quite some time to come to even that simple of an explanation.”
You could do same or work on other angles. The link above will help out.
Distinguish yourself in the market
I hope you know that the market is already overcrowded in certain products and services. Does that mean that you cannot make the best out of the market? Not necessarily. You can become the best or at least, one of the best.
To achieve that, you will need to be different. To be different, you must become inventive and innovative. That means you will have to take care of things that bother so many people and you will have to do that well.
It is foolhardy to be deterred by the crowded market but the crowded market is definitely one of the startup struggles that founders must overcome. How then do you overcome this particular obstacle? I will tell you how.
How to overcome it
Here is an experience from the founder of wearable technology company GOQii, Vishal Gondal. This will surely help you understand how to be different. He said,
“At its outset, we wanted to be different, [Being different] proved to be rather difficult. being the strict space the company operated in. There are many groups in the fitness band industry and many of them are much bigger than we are.”
“GOQii was able to differentiate the fitness band space by providing personalized coaches that track your workouts and comments that helped push you to succeed with your fitness goals, We also added monitoring by professional trainers. All for a lower cost than any traditional fitness coach would be.”
You can understand that there is no particular way to distinguish yourself other than the conscious effort towards becoming a better brand than others. It is that simple. You must do what others are not doing to be perceived as better than others.