10 Frequent mistakes you've probably made analyzing your startup idea.
The nature of our work often makes us the first stop of a dreaming entrepreneur looking to analyze his startup idea and its viability. Not surprisingly, we've seen people make the same mistakes time and time again. Often, the only loss is time spent pursuing an unviable idea. However, we wrote this article to list a few of the mistakes in thought that we commonly see in hopes that you will be able to put your energy into something that really amazes, accomplishes and has a good chance of success!
- Believing the idea itself is the product.
Sounds obvious? This is probably the biggest mistake that people make, and definitely our biggest pet peeve. We get quite often the proposal of going 50-50 on a project where the offerer tells us his idea, and we do, ahem, all the rest.
The idea is no more than 5% of the mix. And entrepreneurs seem to underestimate how many different resources they will need. For example, Uber as a company is much much more than its app. It's a whole business team that requires heavy HR work, Marketing, and customer support among other things.
In line with what we said in the last paragraph, more often than we'd prefer, people take into account only tech-related costs and don't think about basic business needs that can make or break the project. Its also quite common to estimate only for the first round of development without thinking about maintenance or consistent growth.
We love night entrepreneurs who juggle their day job with their dream of starting up. However, we see that people often underestimate how much time it actually takes to create and polish an idea. If you are not willing to put in at least 8 of your free hours daily until the project takes off and you can quit your day job, we hardly think you can make something worthwhile. Markets don't accept anything less than excellent, so don't expect to get rewarded for a job half done.
Not having a tech partner.
We see this one often. Entrepreneurs expect that the initial production will be all they need to see if it goes "viral." However, an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) is rarely an end in itself, but rather just a start. Also, regardless of how good your programming team is, a "bug-free" project is rare (without mentioning the need of projects to evolve as people use it and give feedback). Therefore, we believe important for teams to have a full-time tech team or at least a tech-savvy partner.
Too much too soon.
Entrepreneurs often want to see their idea in every possible market right away to see what works. We usually recommend that prototypes and MVPs start slowly. Choosing a pilot channel (aka. iOS or Android, or Mobile App vs. Responsive Web App) depending on the nature of the idea is something important to consider.
Little market research.
This is less common nowadays, but we do see the occasional entrepreneur that didn't check if somebody else was doing it!
Overestimation of need or willingness to pay.
The key word here is MONETIZATION. And surprisingly, people do not think it through as much as they should! Do you have a clear go-to-market strategy? Is there a group of people in desperate need of what you're willing to provide? And of course, more importantly, are they willing to pay for it?
No barrier of entry analysis.
The idea might be good, and the business plan sound, but sometimes it would be much easier for another company to make it, leaving your business in a challenging position. Take for example the entrepreneur that had the idea of "making a social network aimed at posting 360-degree videos." Interesting concept. However, if it suddenly became relevant (as it did), wouldn't be easier for someone like Facebook or Youtube to replicate what you made instead of buying you off for millions of dollars?
Too much focus on "standard" business techniques.
We do believe in the value of process and planning, don't get us wrong. However, we also love a specific kind of entrepreneur who will hassle to prototype an idea herself and launch it among her friends to get some actionable feedback before investing time and money. Can you do it leaner, faster, and with fewer people?
Know when to quit.
Counterintuitive? Hopefully you take this one the right way. Challenges are meant to be overcome, however, sometimes its just not the right time for a specific idea and we'd be better off thinking about something else, or even the same thing in a different way.
"I skate to where the puck will be, not where it has been." -Wayne Gretzky
Here's hoping that we didn't crush your motivation 🥂. In fact, our intention is to empower you to think your ideas through on a systematically, and efficient way. Hopefully, so that you can concentrate on finding something that is worth your time and money, and perhaps maybe, becomes the next big thing. Oh, and when you do, we'd love to hear about it!
If you want to learn more about what we do, visit us at: www.binarymango.comng here...