If you are planning on bootstrapping your next startup, the time to implement that plan is long before your business opens its doors. There are a few helpful measures you can take to ensure that your bootstrapped startup will turn into a thriving one within a reasonable amount of time. Here are a few of those helpful hints.
1. Identify a Co-Founder
There are a few key characteristics you should look for in a good co-founder. You will want someone who has skills that compliment your own. It won’t hurt if they have a lean into another element of your business as well. Having a co-founder who understands your ideas and share the passion as you is important. The most valuable element you can find in a co-founder, is someone who will understand that they may not be able to make a profit themselves until the business is off the ground. It will help to have a good projected time to tell prospective co-founders when they can expect to begin reaping the reward of pay.
2. Start with creating something that is needed in 2-3 years
Keep your big ideas in focus. Maintain that focus by being realistic in your product creations. Do your research, identify any problematic issues in everything from development to sales, and ultimately, make sure to create a product that is not only wanted or needed on today’s market, but one that has viability into the future (Say 3-5 years in the future).
3. Create a working prototype
Start with the creation of a prototype before you kick start the development phase. A good research and development team can actually save you far more on your bottom line than you may have expected. Share the prototype with potential users, accept and brainstorm all user feedback before making the final adjustments for development.
4. Your product will be never perfect, so don’t delay launching version 1
Your product will never be perfect in your eyes most likely. So before you get into coding, it may be best to go ahead and set in stone a soft launch, or beta date to release your product to a pre-discussed and likely limited market of your projected demographics. The best way to handle this issue is to build a minimally viable product and launch it with your target audience. The feedback you get back from your soft launch can go towards improvement or adding any bells and whistles that you may have considered in your initial mockups.
5. Engage users, gather & analyze feedback, making improvements, & repeat
Engage your beta testers in any way you can. It will be their feedback that goes towards making your end product a successful one on a variety of target demographics. When possible, make engagement a rewarding practice for your testers as well by offering them discounts on the completed project. Ask them to share their opinions of your products on their social networks for more rewards. And make sure they are given the opportunity to provide feedback in the most user-friendly manner possible throughout the testing period.
If you implement these techniques for bootstrapping your start up business you will be setting the course for the overall growth and success for your business. Always take the time to brainstorm your ideas with all staff members. You might be surprised at the good ideas you can generate from every corner of your office.