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Launching a new business might be one of the hardest things that you ever attempt in your life.
One of the reasons it is so difficult is that the marketplace loves inertia.
By bringing a new product or service, you are trying to disrupt that coveted equilibrium.
In this article, I will be sharing with you 3 short, yet solid tips that are going to make your life a bit easier.
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1) Validate your assumptions
Perhaps the most common mistake that aspiring entrepreneurs make is that they blithely trust their assumptions without taking the time to actually validate them.
When you have a new business idea, it is biased by your own preconceptions, background and personality.
Your perception might be skewed and that is the reason why you need to crash test your assumptions against the marketplace.
You need to get these biases out of the way.
First of all, you can get feedback and advice from experienced entrepreneurs.
People who have been there and done that, can provide tons of valuable feedback.
They might not always be right but their advice can be invaluable especially at the early stages of the business.
Second, you need to talk to the potential customers of your product or service.
Do these people think that your idea has merit?
Are they actually willing to pay for your product?
These are hard questions that you need to ask.
Finally, you may gather data and facts that either contradict or support your idea.
This is a bit problematic because humans are irrationally wired to seek data and information that enforces their beliefs, while dismissing information that contradicts them!
That is why you need to be extra careful with this and try to be as unbiased as possible.
2) Release earlier rather than sooner
This is quite related to the previous tip.
Supposing your assumptions seem valid, you move on to building your product or service.
Even after “validating” your assumptions with the ways I described above, you can still not be 100% sure whether the market is going to have a positive reaction to what you bring to the table.
The final and most accurate validation will occur after your release your product.
Market feedback is your ally here. That is why it is imperative to do it as early as possible!
Sure, if you are in an industry that is regulated or that people’s safety can be put in jeopardy, you need to be extra diligent.
However, in all other cases, which are the majority, it is to your benefit to release early. This will allow you to get real-life feedback from actual people.
This valuable feedback will allow you to iterate on your product improving it and making it more valuable.
3) Double down on what is working
Great! So, you now have launched your product, received market feedback, improved it and you are ready to get to the next level.
The next step is to identify marketing channels that work.
From all the possible go-to market strategies that you can think of, one is going to have the highest return on your resources (money, time, effort, labor etc.).
Your goal is to identify that channel and make the most out of it.
There is only one way to do that: test, test, test!
After you identify a channel that performs, you need to double down on it!
That means shutting down all other channels (at least temporarily) and focus all your resources on the best performing one.
You have to do that moving quickly for two reasons.
First, so that you can avoid having competitors catch up with you.
Second, because you are going to get your returns much faster (in the form of revenue), and thus have them available for investing them back into the business.
So there you have it. Three solid tips on building a new business. Cheers!