Startup Steps: The First 3 Steps to Launching Your Startup Idea

Aaron Vick - Startup Steps - The First 3 Steps to Launching Your Startup Idea

Aaron Vick - Startup Steps - The First 3 Steps to Launching Your Startup Idea

So, you have a million dollar idea and are ready to get to work? I’m here to help. Here are the next startup steps you need to take to launch your business.

Most startups fail. Research institute Statistic Brain reports that up to 50% of startups go out of business within their first five years, on average. The number of startups going out of business approaches 70% within 10 years of starting out. These numbers aren’t encouraging.

What’s going wrong? Why are so many startups starting out with such high hopes and great potential going out of business within a decade?

Here are a couple of reasons why many startups fail:

  1. Lacking focus
  2. Lacking motivation, passion, and commitment
  3. Hubris, unwillingness to listen or learn
  4. Bad business advice
  5. Lack of business mentors
  6. Lack of business knowledge
  7. Raising too much capital, too early on

The lack of business knowledge and training is what stands out to me on this list. Many entrepreneurs are gifted at summoning lightning bolt ‘Eureka!’ moments. The majority of entrepreneurs, it seems, are lacking in practical business training, however.

Let’s set that straight right now! We’ll be taking a look at the three most important startup steps once you’ve had your brilliant business epiphany.

The Three Most Important Startup Steps To Set You Up For Success

So you’ve been struck by a bolt of inspiration lightning. You’ve had an idea for an exciting new startup. Now what?

1. Start With A Market Study

It’s never been faster or easier to start a new business. There are also new niches needing to be filled each and every day. It’s exciting, especially when we see entrepreneurs seeming to spring up overnight to almost immediate success.

To start, you might ask yourself two questions. “Why isn’t anyone already doing this?” and “What new can I bring to the table?”

Even if you just stopped there, you’d already be on your way towards constructing a traditional business plan. The first question should offer some insight into the potential market demand for your product or service. The second will help you identify your Unique Value Proposition (UVP).

I’d recommend taking the extra step and conducting some actual market research. It’s one of the greatest advantages of conducting business in the digital age.

Only the largest companies would have the resources to conduct product testing or consumer polls before the Internet.

Now anyone with a decent Twitter following or access to online communities can get at least a window into the market demand for what they’re offering.

Begin by assessing the size of your potential market. It’s impossible to predict how much money you’ll make in your first few years of business. A rough estimate should give you at least a vague idea of how much you stand to earn.

Even a rough estimate could at least give you an idea of how much time, energy, and resources you’re able to allocate towards your startup while still remaining solvent.

2. Identify A Problem

This is kind of an in-between step between having your initial startup idea and conducting market research. You likely perceived a problem when you first had your startup idea, even if only subconsciously. Taking some time to really investigate the problem will pay off in dividends in a variety of ways.

First, identifying potential pain points is integral to creating your buyer personas. You need to visualize your potential customers as clearly as possible to figure out what really makes them tick. You have to get inside their heads at the moment when they’re sitting down to look for a solution in the search engine.

If there’s no pain point for the problem you’re seeking to solve, it’s going to be difficult to convince people to give you money.

Researching the problem you’re looking to solve will also help you to flesh out your business plan, turning it into a business strategy. You’ll have an insight into the current market as well as where it might be heading. You can take these figures to potential investors to make your case.

3. Construct Your Business Strategy

Now that you have a sense of the market for your startup business idea you can start drawing up your business plan in earnest. You should have a sense of your operating budget for the first few years as you’ve already done your market research.

Once you have a tentative budget in place you’ll be able to determine if you’ll be able to hire employees or not. If that’s something you even want to consider, that is. Attempting to do everything yourself is not very scalable or sustainable. Avoid wearing too many hats and avoid the inevitable startup burnout.

As you’re laying out your detailed business plan you should start to get a sense of the skills you’ll need to flourish in your industry. Are you a CPA? If not, you may need to brush up on your accounting acumen.

Are you a graphic designer? Because you’ll need to make your digital assets as attractive as possible to stand out in the marketplace.

As you assess the skills you’ll need for your startup idea to succeed, a concrete picture of your new business will begin to emerge. As you’re imagining the visual branding, you’ll start to conceive of social media marketing strategies. You’ll also start to come up with ideas for blog posts to hop on that content marketing train.

It’s been said that the greatest masters visualize what they do before they do it, in as much detail as possible. Chess masters will study their opponent’s style and try and play the game out in their mind. Concert pianists will play through an entire piece in their imagination, from start to finish, before approaching the keyboard.

Ready To Start Your Startup Right?

There is a parable about building structures on shifting sands. Trying to start a new business blind is like building a structure on a fault line. You’ll always be playing catch up and filling cracks.

Laying the proper foundation will let you focus on bringing your startup ideas to life. Get in touch today and let me walk this startup steps with you.