17 Oct Why Do So Many Startups Still Struggle To Find Success?
There are literally thousands of venture accelerators, pre-accelerators, startup weeks, startup weekends, incubators, platforms, books, podcasts, videos, workbooks, blogs, technology tools and more to help startup founders succeed.
But, how well is the current startup facilitation ecosystem actually working?
Worldwide, of the thousands of startups who apply to seed-accelerators only 2–3% are being accepted; 80% of new businesses never get any monies from third-party investors, and it is commonly assumed that somewhere between 75% and 90% of all startups fail.
You’d think that with so many people and organizations trying to help startups that the startup success rate would be much better than it is.
What’s the Problem?
Over the past 5 or so years, seed-accelerators have shifted from accepting early-stage startups to preferring startups that are much further along and have demonstrated some level of initial sales traction. This has led to a significant reduction in the percentage of startups being accepted into these programs and has left many startups with far fewer choices when it comes to getting the coaching and guidance needed in the very early stages of their development.
And those choices, along with the Lean Startup Methodology itself, gloss over what I feel are several core areas of expertise that are critical to a startup’s success, marketing & product management.
Based on a survey by CB Insights of reasons for startup failure, 42% said there was not enough need for their product, 19% said they got outcompeted and 14% said poor marketing & sales processes was a reason for failure.
I believe that it’s time to incorporate more marketing and product management guidance into early-stage startup programs.
After all, selecting and finding the right customers to target, performing competitive analyses, optimizing product positioning and getting your first few reference-able customers are all critical to a startup’s success and all require marketing and product management skills to execute well.
Without this marketing and product management guidance, far too many early-stage startups are doomed right from the get-go.