How To Go From A $ 1 Million To $ 100 Million For A Bootstrapped Start-Up
The day one’s venture gets funded is the highlight of many a start-up career. Entrepreneurs dream about it, work towards it and savor it a million times before the D-Day actually comes. Raising capital is not a sure sign of health of the firm or a proof of its business model. But it very well paves the way to a lot more experiments there suddenly becomes room for and hence better chances at success.
But is it the only way to make your idea grow and/or business succeed? A more elementary question – is it really worth it? A lot of new age entrepreneurs surely seem to think otherwise. The word venture capital or a need to opt for it strikes fear in their hearts. Reasons for the same can be manifold but one theme runs ubiquitous – the accompanying answerability and consequent dilution of vision. When you have someone to answer to, you cannot grow and work upon your idea way you want to.
Such entrepreneurs generally take up the bootstrapping route. For those who are giving skeptical looks, successful bootstrapping stories abound. Keeping in mind following tips is sure to help you go the long way:
Every Day IS Sales Day
Do not wait for your idea to achieve that perfection. Launch it today. Every day that you are delaying is a day lost in sales. There is no such thing as a perfect product. Whatever shape it is in today, market it. Let people know that you have a product. Get the feedback. It’ll help you develop what your customers want. Remember, what you think your customers need and what they really need might not always be the same. Their feedback will help your product become as close to their needs as possible. It will also give you time for word of mouth publicity and, who knows, you might even land a handful of early bird offers.
Hire More The Person Than The Capabilities
As any boss would agree, administrative costs are one of the biggest money drainers. There are offices space needed, salaries to be paid, employee benefits to be provided, etc. In such a scenario, it is important to hire those people who share your vision of the company. Every penny accounts and such people ensure that every penny invested in them does. They are ready to ride the roller coaster with you and tend to stay for longer duration. Every general needs not a well-equipped army but an army that will stick by him when the bombs rain down. The same holds true for the start-up environment too.
Make Every Penny Count
One big advantage that venture capitalist- funded firms have over the start-up is the comparatively higher/consistent inflow of money. Thus they can afford to throw that annual company party in a swanky resort or pay for the one more foosball table in the cafeteria. A bootstrapped start-up cannot. Work in a bedroom and have your weekend parties in the living room. Customers are impressed by the product you make, not by your legendary bashes. Concentrate on that.
Optimally Time Your Capital Raising
Yes, you read that right. Being bootstrapped does not mean that you treat venture capital as a strict no-no. But opt for it once you have a better footing and can survive without it. A tip – use it as a financial cushion and not the go – to account.
It IS possible to make a $100 million business without having to resort to venture capital.