Startup companies that are trying to market their product to multiple channels or customers often have a difficult time reaching first customers, break even, or becoming profitable. The problem is one of focus. Many startup companies do actually have several avenues for selling their products and services in the marketplace. Determining how to approach the market can make or break a small startup.
Many companies get bogged down in trying to please or approach too many types of customers or clients and spread themselves too thin resulting in little revenue being generated. The key is to take a “laser-beam” approach to early customers, rather than a “shotgun” approach and hoping a customer comes in the door.
Imagine the company is making large sheet cakes in a small home with only one oven. The company can only bake one cake at a time. More than one will not fit the capacity of the oven, and if more than one is attempted in a short period of time, all of them will be undercooked and ruined.
How does a company choose which “cake” to focus on? The company must determine which of the potential customers they are going to focus on. If a detailed market analysis has not been completed, it should be done. The result of the market study should be: who is actually going to buy this product/service and actually pay me.
Once the market is narrowed to a few choices, the company should find “The Best First Thing.” The Best First Thing is the market segment that will actually pay for the product or service; first.
The key is to get revenue coming in the door. There may be many market opportunities for your company’s products and services, but you must start with one that will start paying the bills.
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