5 Things You Can Do to Make Your Startup Stand Out

March 11, 2016

11:27 am

Between 1978 and 2012, the number of startups as a share of the whole business world in America decreased by 44 percent. Let that sink in for a moment. It will likely come as a shock because people do nothing other than talk about how this is the age of the startup.

American optimism has faded over this period and people are more realistic than before. It also comes as so many startups are known to fail. The trick to not failing is to stand out from the crowd. And this guide is going to show you what you need to do to stand out from the crowd.

Get a Unique Selling Point

To be honest, most startups lack any key selling point at all. They may think that they have a unique selling point, but the reality is most of their competitors have exactly the same unique selling point. It makes them just like everyone else. Unsurprisingly, nobody cares about them and they don’t rocket to the top of the tree, as a result.

You need something that will resonate with your target market that encourages them to make a purchase. It has to be something that they’ve never seen before, even if it’s only a variation on an already existing idea.

This will be the hardest part of starting your startup.

Offer Fantastic Customer Service

You can no longer get away with a lack of funding in your customer service department. Too many business decisions are made based on how well a company communicates with its customers. You have to be as helpful as possible to make sure your target audience feel like they are getting value for money.

Invest in employing the right operatives and don’t make this second to your product. Believe it or not, many companies have made fortunes simply because they deliver a better customer service than other companies in their sector. They don’t have a unique product they simply have unique customer service.

Give Back

Helping others is one of the ways you can make your business stand out. Far from being a nice thing, corporate philanthropy has become something of a necessity. This doesn’t mean you need to take away from your core business activities in order to succeed. But you should dedicate even a smidgen of your time and profit to give back.

Philanthropic giving makes a brand more appealing, especially when it comes to younger consumers. Being active in your local community can have a huge impact on your ability to appeal to your target audience.

Solve a Single Problem

Your company needs to be one thing to a small group of people. It may seem counterproductive, but this is all about the building process. Too many startups attempt to solve multiple problems at the same time. It gets them into a situation where are attempting to compete in multiple areas without the resources, including an existing customer base.

Dominate a small niche first. Only then when you have exhausted your target audience should you expand your range of products to incorporate another niche. Only large corporations can attempt to dominate multiple areas of business, and even they are not always successful.

The Customer Is Always Right

Yes, you always get the occasional idiot who doesn’t know what he’s talking about, but the general rule is still that the customer is always right. They are the ones giving you their money, and that virtue alone makes them always right.

You need to listen to what they are saying. It may not always be direct feedback, but by using customer analytics you can discover what they are crying out for.

And if you still don’t know what customers want, it’s time to ask. There’s nothing wrong with asking what a customer wants because they will be delighted that you care enough to even think about it. Startups are often terrified of their target audience, and so they attempt to guess.

Startups that stand out are always looking for feedback from customers, and they are not scared to ask for it.

Is it Enough to Succeed?

To be brutally honest, you can have all this and still fail as a startup. Your product may be ahead of its time or a large corporation may come down and flood your niche with a better-funded marketing campaign. These things are impossible to prepare for, but that shouldn’t deter you.

Do your best to offer a unique proposition and the customers will come.

How are you going to make your startup stand out from the crowd?

 

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AJ Agrawal is an entrepreneur, speaker, and writer. He is the CEO and Co-Founder at Alumnify Inc.

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