Building and scaling any tech startup is difficult but not impossible. In July 1994, Amazon started as a small online business, the tech giant has now grown to several billions of dollars worth of investment. In this article, you will learn the exact strategies Jeff Bezos took to build the world’s largest Internet company in 2021.
He started just like every other entrepreneur.
First things first.
What is a tech startup?
A tech startup is a company that brings new innovation to technology products, processes, and services. Such businesses are mainly focused on changing the status quo by offering new technology offerings to the market. Most startups are assumed to be tech startups and scalable with time.
However, there is a difference between scalable and non-scalable startups. A scalable startup is one whose business model can accommodate fast and steady growth while still being profitable, these types of companies embrace technology and tech-embedded services in their operations. While non-scalable startups have direct input-output business models which may not adjust favorably to rapid growth in terms of profitability and size.
The productivity of non-scalable startups is dependent on how much is put into the business. An example is a private practice doctor whose revenue only increases when additional patients are taken in. The business model is non-scalable because in order to expand he will have to employ other doctors to attend to his increasing pool of patients, resulting in additional costs. It is not the same with scalable businesses.
What does it mean to scale a tech startup?
To scale a tech startup means to increase revenue, attain business growth and profitability at a fast pace usually with little resources. To do this effectively, massive capital investments are required to sponsor the disruptive technology features tech startups usually bring to the market.
When a business scales, it takes advantage of its available resources to increase revenue as well as efficiency.
“Think big, start small, then scale or fail fast” – Matt Lederhausen.
7 Hot strategies you can leverage to scale your tech startup
Scaling a startup is not a day’s job, especially in this period of fast-moving technological advancement. Here’s what every tech company should do in order to scale up and make global impact:
1. Leverage investor’s funding
Facebook in 2009 raised $200million in series D round. This is the secret of the most successful tech companies you’d find on the buzz. Angel investors and VC firms are always on the hunt to find the next Google and Microsoft, and guess what?
They’re loaded with so much cash you might never have to worry about paying your next bills if you get an investor funding. So what to do? Very simple, first of all, ensure your business is worth investing in. Nobody likes to make a bad investment.
Check your market stats, you’d need a good market acceptance level to access your next investment funding. Make sure you’re actually serving the right product to the right market. You might also need to take a market survey to get your facts right here. Secondly, package your brand and reach out to potential investors.
2. Build real solutions
Airbnb succeeded on this premise. People need simpler and faster ways of doing things. Speed is a key factor in people’s lives. Always keep people at the heart of your work. Your product should be centered on helping people live better, easier, and healthier lives.
When a product is focused on helping people to be happy, if marketed to the right people it will easily gain wide market acceptance. For example, a company that creates laughter-inducing apps for aged mobile users.
3. Get into a startup accelerator
Depending on which growth stage your startup is currently at, a startup accelerator will provide the ground basis you can harness in your scaling journey. Tech companies are increasingly on the rise as a result of the mentoring, financing, networking opportunities, and access to larger entrepreneur communities that accelerator programs provide.
There are so many startup accelerators and if you look well enough you would find the right one for you. You can reach out to them by application, usually, there are application periods for each accelerator. After applying, successful startups will be invited for an interview and finally, the accelerator program. Examples of good startup accelerators are 500 startups, YCombinator, AngelPad.
4. Hire quality talent
‘You don’t build a business, you build people, then people build the business’- Zig Ziglar. Invest in hiring the right people with great vision to join your team.
If you have to open your doors to remote work, then do it. Just make sure anyone on your payroll is smart, has a strong work culture/ethic, and is passionate about adding value to your overall goals. Always have a strong team backing you up. From the technical guys to the financial gurus, carry everyone along in building your tech startup. All hands should be fully on deck.
5. Grow and expand your business horizons
In the world of technology very little (if any at all) stays static. This is the era of AI-powered technology and 5G connection adoption. As a business in the tech space, your ability to stay relevant and scale depends on your adaption to new technologies. In fact, the secret of top tech companies is their affinity for creating new technology trends. They make the next-level devices and digital products every other company subscribes to.
Three tips on how to build new business horizons:
- Invest in new possibilities for your business like creating a new product line, product modifications, and so on. It’s good to ride with the old but it’s even better to improve for better efficiency.
- Incorporate disruptive technologies into your business. Try to always be on the hunt for the newest technology trends you can leverage for greater efficiency, ahead of your competition.
- Find novel ways of doing things more efficiently in place of traditional models. In your industry, there are possibly some practices that, to be honest, are quite outdated. But nobody has found an alternative to them yet, so everybody keeps doing it the same old way. As a tech startup looking to scale, it’s your job to identify broken techniques to provide better solutions. Those are scaling opportunities presented as challenges.
6. Network and Build communities
Intentional business networking is a proven strategy used in creating trade partnerships and forming strong business alliances. Good networking will grant you access to entrepreneur communities, which naturally encourage strategic development in the tech space.
Apart from these, other benefits include direct access to industry expertise, business insights, access to early-stage technology advancement, and other perks of founder communities and networks.
As an entrepreneur, use every opportunity to build your business connections. Whenever you can attend work-related conferences, seminars, symposiums, and other strategic meetings, your primary focus asides from learning should be networking with other attendees. You never can tell, you might be sharing a table with Paul Graham for all you know.
7. Work with the market
Growth doesn’t happen overnight therefore to truly accelerate the process, you have to be in tune with the market. Don’t be afraid to keep modifying your product till you get that product market-fit.
Focus on producing what your target customer needs instead of just flowing with trends. Build sustainable products that align with your company’s vision in the long term.