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What Is The One True Thing You Know?

Thursday, October 27, 2016 5:31
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I am a seed investor.  When we meet with entrepreneurs about their businesses, we speculate a lot about the future.  Where can the business go?  How big can it get?  Who’s the customer?  How many?  In those conversations, you start to pick up on what the entrepreneur truly believes.  What’s that one true thing that they know which the rest of the world doesn’t know?

We talk a lot about focus in entrepreneurship.  Executing successfully demands that everyone concentrate on the one thing they have to do to be successful.  It’s summed up sarcastically in, “you had one job”.

Sometimes entrepreneurs get into a situation where their product becomes a Shamwow.  Is there anything it can’t do?  When that condition occurs, you will lose focus and you will lose sales.  When you lose sales, you are toast.

At seed the game is not to build a blow out business.  The game is to get to a Series A with a business that looks like it can scale into a big market.  Depending on your business, the metrics for a Series A vary.  Others have written about what it takes to do it in a SaaS business, or a freemium community business.  By the way, in Fin Tech the business model often is a choice between SaaS and charging basis points based on AUM.  Sometimes charging bips is better.

Amazon started with books. They did it really well. Now look at them.

If you used The Business Model Canvas to structure your idea into a business, revisit it. Get to the core reason why your business exists and the one true thing about the world you know.  Focus and organize all your effort around it and go.  If you are going to fail, fail playing your strong hand.


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