Why Solving a Big Problem Isn’t Enough to Build a Billion-Dollar Startup

Four steps to take once you’ve nailed the solution

Step 1: Perfect the scalable solution

To begin mapping the path from solution to valuation, I’m going to use two high-growth startup examples from my recent past, plus a third example you’ll be more familiar with.

Step 2: Carve out a new market

All three companies started with an opportunity to take what they’d learned at a low level and solve a much larger problem.

Step 3: Build off your intellectual property in the new market

Anyone can say they’re using technology and innovation to revolutionize an industry, including the industry incumbents. In fact, the big craze right now is to add machine learning to just about any product, regardless of whether it’s useful or whether it’s even viable.

Step 4: Maintain your lead

Every successful first-mover startup usually finds itself entering its growth phase with a 6-to-18-month head start in creating and dominating their new market. The pain and struggle they go through in the previous three steps results in scars that are expensive that build moats that are wide.

I’m a multi-exit, multi-failure entrepreneur. Sold ExitEvent. Building TeachingStartup.com & GetSpiffy. Former Automated Insights. More info at joeprocopio.com

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