Competitive Industry! How “Prospect Listening” Saved My Ass (Part Two)

Part Two: Money Wasted - Avoid This Crucial Mistake I Made And Step 1 Of “Becoming An Outlier”

In this part of the series, we’ll run through a crucial mistake to avoid or you could take a bigger revenue hit than I did. I’ll also dive into step 1 of the process. These two topics allow you to become psychologically aware of the hidden pitfalls usually experienced while implementing steps 2 and 3. Take note so you can give yourself the best shot at spotting and avoiding them.

We all are learning, modifying, or destroying ideas all the time. Rapid destruction of your ideas when the time is right is one of the most valuable qualities you can acquire. You must force yourself to consider arguments on the other side.
-A quote by Charlie Munger (legendary investor and billionaire)

How Well Do You Know Your Startup? Now You Don’t:

You’ve put in the work to build it and you’re proud of it. Your dream is finally setting sail. But try to detach yourself from your startup or you’ll fall for the simplest of mistakes. Sometimes without even knowing it. The biggest mistake I made was targeting the wrong audience, without knowing it. I identified tech-savvy entrepreneurs with basic marketing knowledge as who’d benefit the most from my Hybrid Consulting solution. I WAS ENTIRELY WRONG. It was too wide an audience despite me thinking of it as the right “niche”.

In fact, this happened: The first user I got using my existing acquisition channels----> gone. That's right, he ghosted, but not like the friendly kind of ghost like Casper. I guess I should've seen the signs, especially because he was so bad at even checking his emails.

It taught me that only entrepreneurs with a certain ability could maximize on the true potential of Hybrid Consulting. Something that's engraved in the hearts of most tech startup founders though some haven’t given it much personal recognition. And that's: THE DRIVE TO GET SHIT DONE.

The only way for you to avoid a similar mistake or something worse from happening to you is to ensure you’re treating it like an experiment. Sometimes as low as 1% of your audience will be lured by your new competitive edge while other times you’ll encounter prospects that hate “too simple”. Seriously, how many non-physically challenged people have you seen wait for an elevator in a two-story building? The stairs are literally around 8 steps. Before you invest a ton of time and money into marketing your new competitive edge, you’ll need to “master” it. So be sure to scale into your:

  • Target audience
  • Messaging
  • Acquisition channels

Just as how they’re far too many startups that undersell their products, you also have far too many that undermarket it too. Yes, undermarket is a word. Never forget that even though all you need is an edge, your execution is going to be just as important.


Step 1: List Out Why It’s Hard To Compete ---->

In other words, do the inverse of what Courtland’s guide says (instead of listing user problems, list the competitive disadvantages that your company faces and highlight both the pain-points and benefits behind why users prefer the competition for each listed disadvantage). You’re being your own critic, listing out your own pros and cons.
This is not as easy as it seems. Why? Self-serving bias can literally make or destroy you in this step, just like it significantly slowed me down in the beginning. In other words, don't be afraid to admit that your startup sucks at something. Becoming An Outlier will only help you to gain new competitive strengths, only if you're honest about your startup's weaknesses.
On top of this, sometimes you’ll have to speak to an actual user to truly understand a benefit or pain-point that the competitor’s product solves, not because it’s “advanced”, but because they’ve done the work to give themselves a competitive edge that may not be so noticeable, but it’s definitely working well for them. It’d be a huge plus if you spent the time to find this out.

Hybrid Consulting ---> Ever had a “f**k marketing” moment? I personally built this system to be a startup founder’s cheat code to market your product better and faster through 30 days of hands-on support from me (expert growth hacker). I'm currently helping some of the fastest growing early-phase startup founders. Fill out this form to receive updates and save your spot in my next batch

If you have the drive to get shit done and want to claim the free trial, book the 15 mins call with me here: https://calendly.com/targetedright/hybrid-consulting-free-trial
P.S. You’ll see my background, the 7 skill areas offered, and more of what to expect in our call in the description section on the Calendly page.

PART 3 PREVIEW ---> Here’s What’s To Come:

  • The training wheels are off: DO or DIE (Becoming An Outlier: step 2 and 3)
  • Brainstorm financially viable ideas
  • Scientific ways to hate your ideas
  • Turning step 2 and 3 into a feedback loop

The end result if an idea survives? As long as you've done everything right, you're looking at your startup’s new competitive edge, 99% guaranteed. Can’t wait to share it with you and follow me here on Indie Hackers so you’re notified when I release part 3. Also, let other Indie Hackers benefit from this series too by upvoting this post.

  1. 2

    Nicely said Romaine!
    Interesting series, I'm looking forward to the next part!
    Keep it up! :)

    1. 1

      Happy you loved it! The training wheels come off in part 3, so let me know in the comments where you'll need clarification when part 3 drops. Thanks again for your support.

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