There’s something glamorous about startups. In the last 30 years, the digital revolution and the pace at which it happened made creating your own startup a nice dream to aspire to, but should you do it now? The recent layoffs in tech have brought uncertainty to the surface, but hasn’t it always been there?
Read this article to find out what different publications have been saying about startups!
Not everything in life is a race. And to think that running a business is a race to the top can be a fatal mistake for your company. As Mohammad Farraj points out on Entrepreneur, there are some benefits of taking things slow.
You don’t start by knowing everything there is to your business, even if you’ve been building it from the ground up. Conquering the learning curve you will face as you grow is vital for your business’ sustainable growth.
“The key is not to decide whether or not to go big or to go home; it’s starting small and gaining the perspective to know when it is time to go big.”
Not only that, Farraj points out that taking it slow can help you get better footing with your clients, creating a loyal customer base that will stick by you. Unlike big companies, small ones benefit from using social listening to see how they can pivot for the convenience of their audience, creating organic growth and maintaining a customer-centric motto.
If you’re thinking about starting your own company or joining one, remember there is strength in having small things under control to create progressive growth.
For many people, now is the time to start their own business. Not only that, according to Amanda Hoover’s piece for Wired, indicators predict that there will be a surge of new entrepreneurs using the funds that investors have ready.
Working full-time has certain disadvantages, as your time and energy are usually devoted to developing products that you might not be fully passionate about. With the recent tech layoffs, certain former employees from well-known companies found themselves with enough time on their hands to chase after some passion projects.
“For investors, a solid startup can prove a better bet than tumbling stocks in harsh economic conditions. They’re agile and have fewer costs. And getting customers to pay for a new product during a recession can send a strong message that the idea has legs.”
This early stage began because of 160,000 layoffs in 2022 and over 100,000 in 2023, according to Layoffs.fyi. Still, we must look into the silver linings, as many will be helmed by former workers of big companies, and they will need to build their own teams. Also, Hoover points out that economic downturns usually create more industry leaders, as some of the biggest companies, like Google, Slack, and WhatsApp, emerged after recessions.
Now, let’s say that you’ve decided to start your business, and you’ve set realistic expectations for sustainable growth… but how do you actually grow? According to Soren Kaplan, author of “Experimental Intelligence” and contributor for Inc., it’s all about mastering growth hack strategies.
Growth hacking is defined by Macmillan Dictionary as “a marketing technique that uses innovative low-cost methods to target as many customers as possible.”
“Use a little elbow grease, coupled with savvy customer engagement strategies, to build the basis for market traction.“
Kaplan maps out six different strategies that, when combined, can maximize the growth of a startup without having to make a big investment to create traction from the get-go.
1. Create content. The best way to leave a footprint anywhere is to create something. Content can help you build an audience and get your business model associated with a brand voice and topics to become a thought influencer.
2. Master SEO. How do people find you? By looking for something. If you position yourself as an expert and dominate the search engines with backlinks and keywords, you’ll soon be recognized in your niche.
3. Produce video. As Kaplan points out, YouTube is the second biggest search engine after Google, so staying out of that game is just wasteful.
4. Use email marketing. The advantage of email is that when someone gives you their email address, they’re consenting to receive communication, promotions, and other information from your business.
5. Track your numbers. Measuring how well things are doing is the only way to grow, create new goals, or reroute any decision.
6. Check, tune in, and do it again. As much as you want to just leave things to run their course, the internet is constantly changing, so you must tune in and move things around. Again, and again, and again.
Startups have a reputation for being something that you can start with an idea straight from your home (69% of startups actually began this way!) and that you can tend and nurture until it becomes something that changes the whole world. Still, an idea is only the first block; you have to build around it smartly, from beginning a team, positioning your brand, and gaining an audience.
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