One of the biggest misconceptions for entrepreneurs is that money will magically start rolling in from day one. The reality is that it takes a lot of time, effort, and hard work to make a living off your business, let alone build a successful and thriving company.
As a founder or founding partner of 6 businesses over the last 20 years, I've seen a lot of similar themes emerge. Within that, I've clearly identified where so many entrepreneurs fail.
If you're ready to become an entrepreneur, the 4 strategies below will help you get started.
1. Find a market with a need you can fill.
As an entrepreneur, you need to be realistic. Sure, it's great to have a vision for what your perfect business looks like. But if there's no market for it (no one is buying what you're selling), your dream is pointless. If you want your company to succeed, find a market that has a need you can fill.
Not sure where to begin? Do your research. Let's say you've created a new widget. This widget is better than any other widget you've seen on the market. Test your hypotheses and look to your competition. Are they making money, are widgets flying off the shelves, and what's the sentiment around their brand?
To get a general idea, look on their website, read the testimonials and client success stories. Are they solving a real problem or only providing a Band-Aid solution? You're not here to create something average. You want a life changing, market disrupting, money making product.
2. Create a product or service that transforms people's lives.
One of the best ways to find a market with a need is to look at what people are missing in their lives.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself:
- What is preventing my customers from becoming happier, healthier, and more successful?
- What are my customers missing in life or business, and how can I provide it?
- What is the outcome that I'll provide? What will my customer be able to do or achieve once they're used my product or purchased my service?
Create an aspirational vision of your business. Allow potential customers to see and feel how their situation will transform once working with you.
3. Standardize a process to turn that product into traffic, leads, and sales.
We all have ideas. In fact, as creative's and entrepreneurial spirits, we often have multiple ideas per day. The difference between those that succeed with their business ideas and those that fail is one simple thing. Forward momentum.
It's putting a plan in place that allows you to reach new markets, expand your offering, and test your theories. After all, your goal as an entrepreneur is to generate interest around your product or service. That means you need a system to crank up the traffic, leads, and sales.
Start with a basic sales funnel that guides potential customers along the buyers journey. Catch their attention (and contact details) with a lead magnet, and then nurture that relationship straight into activation.
4. Develop "a bias towards action" mindset.
One of the most common traits found in successful entrepreneurs is a bias towards action. It's the ability to make decisions quickly and act on them. Because think about the alternative.
It's that friend who talks about an idea for months, even years or the client who says they're launching a new product, but never pulls the trigger. Sitting back and waiting for the "right time," will never happen. If you want to succeed, you have to take action.
And once you start making faster decisions, that mindset takes hold and becomes an addiction. Begin to develop yours by creating inertia that pulls you towards that next big decision. Step out of your comfort zone, decide to act, push go, learn, and iterate. That process alone will help you move mountains.