What aspects of the process are entrepreneurs blind to?
As first time entrepreneurs, what part of the process are people often completely blind to?
I've benchmarked over 1000 SME businesses in regards to their marketing attitudes and behaviours asking over 50 questions of each business. So i'll confine my comments to marketing and strategy. The absolute number 1 is lack of research. Entrepreneurs by their nature are courageous, risk takers, and innovative.
They expect others to see their ideas as brilliant and that "sell themself" - we found that less than 15% of SME business owners had done sufficient research of their market, competition or their product prior to launch.
They spent money and time on product development, on fitting our their offices or warehouses, on branding and websites. But they rarely invest enough time in truly understanding the dynamics of their market, their competition and importantly what strategic positioning they are going to adopt in the market.
Understanding the importance of structuring your business in a way that will enable you to strategically grow and protect your asset.
Creating a business based on your exit strategy as this will guide you in how to start your business and work each day.
Hi Lauren, I have found that entrepreneurs often do not understand there basic prospect avatars real wants and needs and how to craft their (the entrepreneurs) value proposition to satisfy those wants and needs.
I work with entrepreneurs who are financially savvy,have a great business structure, and it still run into problems with revenue because the value proposition has not been researched well enough.
In my experience new entrepreneurs lack knowledge on their financials and the growth points of a business. Shockingly, I have even come across accountants that do not know this.
I will speak specifically to tech startups and app startups. When launching into these segments many entrepreneurs get totally enamored with the highlight reel of all the media outlets. They truly believe that in months they'll be the next Facebook.
Now, I'm not trying to squash dreams, because being bold and audacious is important. However, don't throw out common sense. Starting any type of business is exciting, but there is a definite lack of media coverage on the "daily grind" of operating and selling. Why? It isn't very sexy and it doesn't inspire (or rather, the media companies don't think it will).
This is the very same reason you hardly hear about failures of largely funded entrepreneurs. The media doesn't want to cover that (it is deemed dismal). However, if positioned correctly there are many lessons to be learned from the failures and struggles of others. I dare people to live vicariously to reduce the pitfalls that happen to them on their business journey.
Having worked with thousands of entreprneurs over the last twenty years, the biggest issue is not understanding the "world" of the customer. That is, they don't understand what their customer-to-be's life is like, the problems they have, how the approach finding solutions, etc.
Without knowing what problem your potential customer is trying to solve, it is impossible to provide them with a solution.