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Why good ideas fail to become successful businesses

Friday October 12, 2012

Wouldn’t it be great if good ideas could always be turned into successful businesses? If good ideas that your friends and family tell you are great were always viable 9 months after you’ve launched? If people who work hard were assured success as entrepreneurs?

The truth is that there is no guarantee that your business will survive – even if you have a great idea, work hard and, once launched all your friends buy your product or service. The sad fact is that good businesses fail every day and – according to The UK Office of National Statistics – 35% will fail in their first three years. Why? Because, as mundane as it sounds, most people who start a new business fail to get the basics right before they dive in. The result? – they put their hard-earned savings, assets, and personal relationships at risk.

In our experience, entrepreneurs are always strong on ideas. We should know and the SurveyMe team will tell you our minds swirl with new ideas every day for using SurveyMe to solve common business problems!  Entrepreneurs work hard to make their dreams a reality, but frequently forget that simply applying common sense in an objective way before diving in, can be the difference between success and failure. To prove my point, take the widely accepted report about ‘Why Businesses Fail?’ from Wharton Business School. It states that 32% of start-ups fail because of inadequate research and development in the first place and a further 23% fail because the products/services were simply bad ideas. Now, if you consider that a business idea based on a bad product or service idea is a symptom of poor research in the first place, then the implication is that over half of all start-up business failures can be avoided by doing objective market research.

It’s an old adage, “if you fail to prepare, then prepare to fail”. A survey of 500 businesses that started in 2009 revealed that 64% did so with less than £5,000. According to the ONS, the average cost of a start-up business failure for an entrepreneur is £6,000 – and that’s without the time, energy and emotion you’ve invested. Wouldn’t it be great if before you dived in, you could stand in the street for a day, email or tweet 100 people to ask them objectively what they think about your idea?  Or perhaps shortly after you’ve launched, while you are scratching your head wondering why your wonderful idea isn’t going as you planned? – while there’s still time to do some tweaking! How helpful would it be having all the responses collated, analysed and ready for you to view within seconds of being sent?

At SurveyMe, we are passionate about helping business owners and managers. We are driven by the desire to help people make better-informed decisions at the ‘point of experience’ to solve important problems they face every day. We know from experience that if you ask your (potential) customers what they think, you won’t go far wrong if you listen and take action.  It’s why we start by giving everyone two free surveys and 100 free responses for each survey – because it is unlikely your idea will be right the first time and who knows what positive difference 200 people might make to turning your good idea into a successful business that is destined to survive from the start!

Tags: Customer Experience, Feedback, Mobile Survey, Point of Experience,

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