Stewarding a startup from initial inception to long term success is not easy, and the best way to build towards sustainable growth is to have a strategy in place that sets out how you are going to achieve this.
In order to develop an impactful, actionable growth strategy, there are a few key components to consider, so let’s go over them to give you a head start.
Looking into different sources of growth financing
Even if you have a great team and a game-changing concept, your startup won’t get off the ground without funding.
This is especially true in competitive market segments, such as SaaS. As such, it pays to look for SaaS funding to help grow your organization consistently, rather than opting for generic finance packages that are less specialized and less flexible.
Revenue-based financing might be a sensible choice, for example, especially if you have already built some momentum and have a track record of growth to back up your application. Furthermore with this model, you won’t be relinquishing any part of your ownership of the organization, as would be the case if you opted for VC or angel investment.
Understanding the value your business brings to the table
Another founding principle of your growth strategy must be the value proposition which your startup represents.
If you don’t know why your organization is an asset to the customers it serves, then you’ll struggle to sell yourself to new prospects, and to retain any people you’ve managed to convert already.
This doesn’t need to be a complex or lengthy pitch; in fact, the more concisely you can express it, the better. And even if you never share it anywhere else, setting out your startup’s value proposition in writing is a helpful process in its own right.
Knowing who you’re selling to
Every business and brand has an audience it aims its products and services at, so startups must be rigorous in their research of the demographics that wander into their crosshairs.
Marketing agencies can help by providing research data regarding the demographics that use a business’s or brand’s products. Agencies like Linchpin are skilled at this type of research.
This knowledge will be at the core of any growth strategy you put together and pursue, as failing to connect with your target audience will lead to all sorts of other calamities that a small, ambitious business cannot afford to suffer.
Tracking your performance
It is all very well to plan for growth, but unless you have a way to measure this and see if you are meeting, exceeding or falling short of targets, then all your strategizing will be worthless.
There are many different metrics which can come into play when determining growth, ranging from the costs you encounter to acquire each customer to the speed with which money is being spent by your organization as a whole.
Whichever factors you focus on, you need to prioritize performance tracking so you can tell whether the rest of your growth strategies are actually having an impact or not.
Hiring talented team members
Growing startups need talented employees to fulfill their potential, and so your recruitment efforts must be part of your growth strategy, not an afterthought.
It’s not just a case of making sure that you don’t miss out on hiring skilled, experienced, valuable team members; you also have to consider that recruiting the wrong people could actively harm your ability to grow. According to Nodex, it is also important to have a good website for recruiters so job seekers can understand your company’s values, purpose, and culture – in other words, your employer brand.
The last thing to say about developing a solid growth strategy for your startup is that it needs to be flexible, and you have to take the time to see how well your plan is working out, and be willing to make changes if there is room for improvement.