Fast growth is one of the most important factors in the survival of modern startups. With a dynamic, fast-moving market like the current one, no startup can afford to take things slowly anymore. This has implications for many areas of operation, from customer acquisition to monetization. Understanding how to maximize the initial potential of the company is crucial for its long-term success.
Try to Narrow Down Your Niche
Starting out in a crowded niche is always going to make things more difficult. Of course, this is not the kind of change one could make on short notice, as your whole planning likely revolves around the specific corner of the market you want to get involved in. In that case, you should explore options for narrowing things down. Try to specialise the features of your product or service as much as possible to make it stand out more easily and reduce the competition. In some cases, this might even lead you to some interesting discoveries, like a completely new niche that nobody has thought of exploring before.
Get Professional Support from the Start
While you can get far with your own resources if you’re careful enough and plan things ahead, you can accelerate your progress significantly by working with a professional who guides you through the more challenging steps. It’s not difficult to find professional support for the more common aspects of running your business, including legal guidance and accounting. It might take a little longer to find the right partner when it comes to more complicated issues like customer acquisition and marketing, but it will be well worth the effort.
Think Several Years Ahead
Growing fast is great when you finally figure out how to pick up the pace, but you have to be careful and think ahead if you don’t want to get swallowed up by your own progress. It’s common to see companies struggling to keep up the pace they themselves have set, and this can easily force you to not only scale down your operations, but maybe even shut down completely. Always have a clear vision of where your business is going to be a few years from now and what its next steps from there will be.
Improve Your Own Credentials
How confident are you in your own ability to lead your business to success? A lot goes into successful leadership, and having the right educational foundation is just as important as the skills you build along the way. A master’s in business analytics from Aston University can boost your performance significantly, and you can easily align it with your schedule without having to sacrifice anything. Online learning can allow modern leaders to focus on running their companies while still obtaining the additional skills they need to see even more success.
Standardise Recruitment as Early as Possible
Once a startup starts growing, things often get chaotic fast. And recruitment is a huge contributing factor to that. Many small companies can benefit from the early adoption of streamlined recruiting practices, and unfortunately, we often see business owners coming to that realisation far too late. This is another aspect of your operations that requires professional help, so make sure to talk to appropriate experts. Standardised recruiting isn’t as scary as it sounds, and even though setting things up initially can be messy, it will be well worth the effort in the long run.
Be Careful with International Expansion
Expanding to new territories can open many additional opportunities, but it can also bring new problems to the table that should never be underestimated. Every country has its own laws and tax regulations, and if you’re not careful you can easily find yourself engaging in behaviour that could land you in trouble in the long run.
Always have someone backing you up on this! This is a good example of the kinds of issues we mentioned above that require specialised assistance and a good understanding of what you’re getting into. This is especially true when it comes to legal issues. Even if you don’t think that your product or service could have any serious legal implications, you can never be sure unless you run that through someone experienced enough.
Explore Grant Options
Government grants aren’t always useful for every type of business, but they can occasionally provide you with a significant boost, or maybe allow you to bridge a problematic gap. In any case, it can never hurt to explore your options on that front. Even if you’re not able to qualify for any grants, you’ll at least be able to write off that option confidently, knowing that you’ve tried. And in the best-case scenario, you might discover something that will allow you to elevate your operations to the next level with minimal effort.
Don’t Wait Too Long to Monetise
Monetisation is a tricky subject for startups. While it’s important to be patient in the beginning and give your company enough time to grow, far too many companies make the mistake of waiting too long to deploy a more aggressive monetisation strategy. As a result, they are either too late because customers have lost interest or are perceived as greedy because the sudden price increase comes in too late. In addition, it’s important to communicate your intentions as clearly as possible (as much as you can without compromising any confidential plans, of course). Make it clear that you’re moving in a certain direction, so that any announcements of monetisation changes don’t come as a shock to your user base.
Some of these points might not be entirely relevant to your company. But you should still go through that list as early as possible in the growth of your business and identify ideas that could prove useful. Even if you’re not able to take advantage of them now, it would still be good to know that you have those options in the future. Once your company has started to grow at a very rapid pace, you’ll appreciate having explored those options in advance.