Taking a tech startup from 0 to 60 is far from easy. From the most successful companies like Airbnb and Spotify, to Uber and Glossier, it proves that Rome certainly wasn’t built in a day. And if there’s anything to learn from them is that no matter how fancy your car is, it can’t run on empty fuel. Similarly, you can keep spit-shining your startup dreams all you want; you’ll need funding to truly soar.
Previously on Funding Note, we delved into the technicalities of how to get investors for your company. But that’s not the only thing you need succeed. Instead of focusing on how to find funding, what’s more important is how to become the kind of startup that actually deserves to have its ideas nurtured and invested in.
Take notes from the failures and triumphs of these startups.
Focus on your target markets
These days, almost every company has something to do with content. But Kaltura, an open-source video platform for publishing and distributing video content, manages to set itself apart. To date, it is being used by 300,000 organizations, boasting a star-studded client roster that includes Harvard, HBO, Groupon, and Bank of America. But what do all of them have in common? They’re all niche markets in the world of enterprise, education, and media.
Kaltura tailors its features to cater to the needs of each sector. They prove that you don’t have to please them all, but instead find a few key customers and get to know them like the back of your hand.
Assess your opportunities
The ed-tech sector in India was once highly sought-after by investors. Sadly, its glory days are gone, and VC Circle reports that it continues to go downhill.
It’s interesting to note, however, that the majority of recent funding went into mature ed-tech startups instead of those in the early stages. This suggests that entrepreneurs may be losing interest in the sector altogether, but the problem lies not in the lack of interesting ideas.
Unfortunately, these young companies may have been dipping their toes in the wrong pool. The global trend points towards online learning, but the same cannot be said for India. The bigger need for disruption lies in K12 education, which also happens to be the preferred sub-sector of investors.
What startups need to do then is assess where the real opportunities are so they can keep up with the market demands.
Transparency is key
Gold is the closest you can get to an invaluable currency. A feature article on FXCM explains that it is immune to inflation and financial risks, making it one of the most coveted investments. Sadly, investing and spending it isn’t as easy as having a wad of cash in your pocket, but that’s where smart trading app Goldex comes in.
Founded with the purpose to address unethical practices in investment markets, Goldex knows that the key to gaining consumer and investor trust is transparency. The app’s competitive edge lies in the leverage they give retail investors who want to obtain the best gold prices, which the company is confident can further build their market share.
Already, they have amassed a strong following of users both traditional and younger.
Team work is essential
When you operate in a volatile startup setting, it can be tempting to get lost in your own work. But Prismatic shows that collaboration and fostering a hands-on working environment pays off. The newsreader platform creates newsfeeds tailored to suit a reader’s specific interests, building from their reading habits and liked content. Behind their brilliant concept is a well-oiled machine where designers and developers converge, and engineers and researchers meet halfway.
Because everyone is actively involved in every step of the journey, it makes for fewer loopholes and more chances of success. Not to mention, it cultivates a healthy sense of camaraderie.