5 Harsh Realities Entrepreneurs Rarely Expect (and How to Overcome Them)

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When you start a new business, some downsides are expected, from a technology learning curve to the challenge of breaking the cost-effective customer acquisition code. However, it is often the obstacles that you least expect that will attach and wreak havoc on your most vulnerable moments. As an entrepreneur who has experienced first hand everything described below (sometimes with surprising consequences), I urge you to listen to my warnings and prepare to face the unexpected, starting with these five harsh realities that can infiltrate go to your business at any time.

1. Your most reliable channel may be counterproductive

I almost acquired a company recently, until I made a distressing discovery: more than 90% of its customers come from a channel, and it’s one they barely control. This break-up took me to a few years earlier, when one of my own companies had relied on the widely promoted strategy to triple what worked.

In theory, it makes sense: if you know that a marketing channel generates the highest profitability, you should go all the way to maximize the success of your business.

In fact, there is a major problem: once you rely too much on anything, person, strategy or platform, you create a huge vulnerability. Your silver bullet could soon become your Achilles heel if the reliable channel suddenly disappears, changes, or becomes less reliable.

The answer here is simple: diversification isolates companies from devastating vulnerabilities, and while it may seem counterproductive to invest in lower ROI activities, it will be worthwhile to build a more solid and defensible business.

Related: Risky Businesses: Should You Diversify?

2. Viral success has a deceptive drawback

One of my clients ’business was a big viral hit, with a fun video that turned into a front-page press whirlwind and a Shark Tank debut. Your business went from a few sales a week to thousands a day, quickly surpassing six monthly sales figures without spending a dollar on paid marketing. It was a true Cinderella story for her business, but she forgot one thing: Cinderella even had an expiration date, and when the clock struck 12, her carriage turned back into a pumpkin. This businessman, however, never expected the viral press and millions of free eyeballs to shrink rapidly to a calm.

Despite the rapid growth of his company, he had to figure out how to recover the lightning in a bottle and deploy them over and over again, once the novelty of the media frenzy faded. Unfortunately, this is exactly what the business requires, and few entrepreneurs realize that highs usually have a steep cliff.

The best bet is to take action by creating a post-viral conversion plan in which you reuse your coverage and new social testing in diverse, cross-platform marketing campaigns. Nothing goes viral forever, but using virality as an asset that enhances credibility can significantly increase your future marketing efforts. If you have it, fight it!

3. Imitators can poison your potential buyers

I recently answered the phone to an angry customer who asked for a refund a few hours after their purchase for a future service. My heart sank instantly as I feared that some defamatory article or an explosive defamation campaign might have detonated on the internet, defaming my company’s reputation and thus scaring the customer. Within 30 seconds of his call, I realized that was not the case.

This client was frightened, but not by a smear campaign; instead, it was an imitator of the night fly who had raised her alarms. She mistakenly believed that my business was misleading imitation, even though a superficial internet search would reveal years of our reputable results, history, and customer testimonials.

Quite frankly, his confusion turned out to be a very important issue: if this impersonator is successfully confusing our audience and, in some cases, driving them away, they may be really doing something right. At the very least, we may be doing something wrong.

We listened to his reviews as he explained why he preferred the imitator, his motives ranging from website animation to the brand’s color scheme to the faces reflected in his marketing. Even with her condescending tone, this client offered valid feedback for our team to evaluate objectively and, in some cases, incorporate.

Imitators may appear and may challenge, reinforce or damage your brand. Ignoring or insulting them does not make your business stronger or weaker. Instead, consider whether there is any truth in the comparative perception of a customer between your business and theirs. Even angry customers and competitors can provide invaluable information about how your business is accumulating. Don’t drown; improve.

Related: How to maintain your first position in the market in a Copycat world

4. CEO status does not build trust

You might think that the term “CEO” on your LinkedIn profile is an automatic symbol of credibility and reliability, but your customers probably think differently. If you have an industry-relevant background or impressive credentials, that’s great, but as a CEO, you also have an unshakable factor that discredits all of the above: bias.

Just because you founded the product or know your service inside and out doesn’t mean you have to be the customer-oriented salesperson. In fact, an employee who is employed or commissioned may not do much better. If you want to build trust and reach an agreement with customers who have never heard of you, leveraging the testimonials of regular and related people who have no interest in every sale provides much more effective marketing than a CEO in a box. soap.

5. You may start to dislike your own baby

In the process of creating a product or service to solve your customers’ problems, many entrepreneurs neglect an underestimated consideration that can raise your ugly head and shake your whole world: Are you building a business that you enjoy?

Creating a successful or profitable business is an impressive achievement, but sometimes it takes months or years to realize that you have created a business that you don’t even like. To avoid this breakthrough finding success, take the time to evaluate the lifestyle, long-term outcome, and day-to-day operations of the business you are creating. The moment you bother with your business, it may hurt you more than good, and vice versa.

Related: The study shows that entrepreneurs really love their business like their children

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