Approximately 80% of new startups and businesses fail. Which is why it’s almost too common to hear someone say how risky starting a business can be. However, any action without a proper plan usually fail and where we think that 80% stems from is because most would be entrepreneurs usually start a business with the idea of I. “What I want to sell”, “what I am good at”, “what can I do”. While there are also many cases of entrepreneurs and businesses succeeding down this route, this really isnt the most ideal case.
Because the fact of the matter is this, when starting a business, it usually isnt about YOU. Who you are, what you can do etc. Unless you are already an influencer or some sort of celebrity with influence and exisiting reach, chances are that getting people to care about what YOU do is tough and often difficult.
When starting a business, instead of thinking of what YOU can do, focus on thinking about your potential customers and how can you reach THEM.
Focus your thinking on how to get distribution to your CUSTOMERS rather than YOU as an individual. To put things in perspective, imagine you are
an world renowned painter. But you stay in a town where food is scarce and the locals would love nothing more than having a hotdog bun. What would you think would be an easier route? Trying to convince the locals to appreciate art, or for you to learn how to make a hotdog bun and sell it to them?
While the example above is overly simplified but the logic holds true. Most of us still focus on ourselves and what we can do as entrepreneurs rather than what the market wants/needs.
To increase your likelihood of success, start by reverse engineering your business plan and ensuring that you have a large enough pool of customers and a way to get to them, before thinking about your product/service. It’s better to sell an unsexy product like insect repellants to a group of campers than trying to start a sexy steak house infront of a temple.
Before you start a digital marketing agency, build a strategy to reach out to businesses who are not digitalised. Before you start a wedding photography business, ensure that there are enough weddings going on and you have a plan to reach would be wedded couples. Before you start a travel blog, think of how you can get people to read it. Focus on the end goal and always aim to reverse engineer to increase your likelihood of success.