If starting a business in Singapore was as easy as coming up with an exciting idea, everyone would be an entrepreneur. Anyone can come up with an idea that sounds like the next Google or Facebook, but only a few people know how to turn their startup idea into a successful business. The thought is the easy part. Executing a strategy that turns your idea into a real thriving business is where the line between being a dreamer and an actual entrepreneur exist.
You probably have a startup idea that exists in your head right now, which you may also want to share with the world. The challenge you are having, though, is actually making it happen. You are not sure how to take the step that leads to a real business being developed from the initial thought in your head. Luckily, we have put together this article to show you how this is done. After reading, you will know the steps to take to turn your startup idea into a real business.
1. Study the market you are entering
Before you can validate if your business idea is worth pursuing, you must do market research about the industry you are entering. You cannot take a test without studying, right? The same applies to your startup. The first step you need to take is researching the competitors your business will be battling for market share with. You need to understand where their strengths and weakness exist. Weaknesses can always be exploited in your favor in order to gain a competitive advantage. But you will not know how to make this happen if you are not fully aware of the capabilities your competitors are operating with.
Next, you must determine how much money you can make with your business when entering this particular marketplace. Is it too saturated, or does an opportunity exist that no one has noticed just yet? You want to make sure your business has the potential to make a profit before investing in something where money is lost, instead of made. Know how much your product or service will cost, how much it will be sold for, and how many customers you need to generate a profit. If you believe that you can capture enough market shares to make a decent profit, move forward.
Now, you need to do research about who your customers are. You must understand what their pain points are, how their needs are currently being solved, and how you can provide them with an offer they will find too irresistible to pass up. When you know all of this, you can then create a product or service that has demand as soon as it is placed in the marketplace.
Now you can start developing a strategy that helps bring your idea to life. You understand what will be required for you to succeed, so you are not going into business with naive expectations. The reason that many startups fail is that the owners have no clue about what they are getting themselves into. Therefore, their startup is destined to fail as soon as it is opened for business. You can avoid all of this by doing the necessary research that helps you prepare for the challenges you are sure to face once your startup is operational.
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2. Create a team to help you
The act of coming up with the idea is the easy part. Actually turning that idea into a functioning business is where things become daunting. This very difficult to do when you are trying to accomplish everything on your own. As such, to be successful, you’ll need some help. In fact, some of the best startups were built with partners. Are you familiar with Google, Apple, and PayPal? These great companies you know today were startups built by partners. It goes to show you that when great minds come together, extraordinary feats can be accomplished.
Take the time to think about where your strengths and weaknesses exist. This helps you determine the type of individual you need to partner with to ensure that your startup becomes a successful company. Your partner must bring skills and resources to the table that you do not possess yourself. Do you possess marketing and sales skills? If yes, then your partner needs to possess the technical skills. If you are not sure where to find a partner, ask the people you know if they can recommend someone. You can also use a social network like LinkedIn to connect with individuals who you believe would make great potential partners. You want to be sure that you exhaust your resources, so you bring on a partner who fits your short and long-term needs.
One thing to keep in mind as you build your team is how to compensate people before your business starts to generate money. You do not necessarily have to use your savings as a means to pay your team. You could defer payments to a later date, offer equity of the startup, or make them an official partner. People will certainly not work for free, but they make take lesser pay upfront if you can sell them on your vision. Besides, who would not want to be a part of the next billion-dollar startup?
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3. Start executing your plan
As you are building your team, it is time to start putting your plans into motion. You need to get a product ready to present to your target customers. You may feel that you are not ready because you need things to be perfect, but this could be further from the truth. Creating a Minimum Valuable Product, also known as an MVP, allows you to test your idea before fully investing in it. This allows you to learn what your customers like or dislike about your product. By knowing this information, you can work towards improving your product to ensure that your customers are happy with their purchase.
What you must remember as an entrepreneur is that you are supposed to be learning with each passing day. Gaining feedback from your customers will lead to you discovering if your startup is feasible at its current state, or if you need to go back to the drawing board to change some things around. Many of the startups that you know today had to do this before they grew into household names. So do not feel defeated if things do not go as expected the first time around. Sometimes making a change leads to the breakthrough that you are working towards.
Building a startup takes a lot of time and energy — way more than it takes being an employee of an established business. Transforming your idea into a real business will not be an easy feat. But if you want to build a successful company, you must be willing to commit to the process long-term. It will definitely be worth it when you find yourself operating a successful startup.
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