There’s an intellectual current wafting through the startup world these days. The idea that small and lean is sexier. That highly targeted marketing drives success. That you should find and appeal to a very select group of customers. That you should offer fewer products and less product functionality, not more. That understanding and serving a narrow market is simpler and easier. That you can’t go big without winning small first.
Startups need broader target audiences, big idea solutions, and a diversified portfolio of growth strategies — not narrower ones.
In the words of Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman: “Most people are going to try to convince you to do some small, stinky little niche. Don’t do it! If you go with a big idea, it gives you lots of room to move.”
Don’t think small. Act big.
Eight years have passed since we won “Honorable Mention – Best Small Business Blog” in the first annual MarketingSherpa Blog Awards. This week we’re back to blogging with fresh perspective. We plan to use this new blog to take a stand on “innovate or perish.” To answer naysayers who suggest that most companies lack the capacity to be innovative. Why? Well, because we believe that America is inherently innovative. That American business is innovative. That the world is innovative. And that with the right tools, process, discipline, commitment, and vision any company can be innovative. Yet 33% of all new businesses fail in the first six months. Eight out of ten tank in the first three years. And according to the Journal of Product Innovation Management, for every 7 new product ideas, 1.5 are launched, and only 1 succeeds.
Clearly there are some big hurdles to idea implementation and innovation. Avoiding premature idea strangulation (gasp!) starts with analyzing potential pitfalls.
Yes – smart folks have talked about some of these issues in isolation, but rarely if ever inclusively and if so inadequately. So, how does innovation get stymied? Why do good ideas fail? Here are 10 reasons (our inclusive checklist):
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