How to Scale Fast and Win the Race to Market
Turn your big idea into big money.
Newsflash: Your big idea is not your ticket to millions of dollars.
Even if you manage to think of something completely outside-the-box, there are 12 other people out there who have already thought up that same exact idea. That doesn't mean you can't still make a fortune, though ...
Think about Steve Jobs and Apple. They made billions after being the first to release a smartphone. They weren't the first to come up with the idea of a phone that's essentially a mini computer in your pocket, yet they're still known as the innovators of the technology because they beat everyone else to market.
That's the lesson I want to drive home: The entrepreneur that implements his or her idea the fastest will win the largest share of the market. Today I'm going to show you why most entrepreneurs fail to bring their big ideas to life, what it takes to implement and scale at lightspeed, and how you can structure your business for success right from the start.
Why most big ideas never make any money
So many creative people walk the face of this earth, yet so few actually turn their ingenuity into cash flow. Like I said, it's because they don't implement their ideas quickly enough. Why's that?
Everyone loves the idea of starting their own business, right? After all, who doesn't want to escape the 9-5 life and become their own boss? Yet, when it comes down to it, most young entrepreneurs avoid the hard work it takes to get their business off the ground. They get sidetracked by what I like to call the "idea fairy" and focus on the secondary stuff -- designing their logo, writing the copy for their website, trademarking, etc. -- instead of laying the foundation for their business so they can bring that idea to life (and actually make money).
The foundation, by the way, is this: Who is the business for? What problem are we solving for them? What outcomes do they desire most? How can we demonstrate that we produce those outcomes?
If you don't have crystal clear answers to those questions, nothing else will matter. You can have the best sales copy, logo, website, etc. and none of it will make you any money. In fact, there are plenty of business out there making a killing even though their copy, logo, website and everything is ugly.
Why? Because they understand their market and deliver on their deepest desires.
You need to structure your business to bring your idea to market faster than anyone else -- even if you don't have everything figured out yet. That's the only work that matters when you're starting out as an entrepreneur.
The recipe for turning your idea into money
Again, if you want to convert your idea into dollars, turn your idea into a sellable product or service and get it out to market before anyone else. It's that simple.
The most successful entrepreneurs don't just sit on their hands and brainstorm until their idea is completely fleshed out. They go to market with what they have, take in the feedback they get from customers, then use that feedback to improve their product.
Note that I didn't say to get the perfect product out there. Your idea doesn't need to be perfect; in fact, I can guarantee you that it won't be. You're going to find holes in your product once you launch it to the public. That's a good thing, because the quicker you find out what those holes are, the quicker you can patch them up and take home higher profits.
Back in 2009, it felt like every personal trainer out there was running outdoor fitness boot camps. That's great and all, but what if it rains? Or what if it happens to be scorching hot outside? Or what if the city chases you away because that park isn't zoned for exercise?
That's when I came up with the idea to start an indoor boot camp, where I could run workouts regardless of the weather or zoning laws. So, the first thing I did was negotiate with an indoor gymnastics center to use their space whenever they didn't have classes.
Was this ideal? Of course not; I would have loved to start out in my own space. But, by opening one of the first indoor boot camp businesses out there, I received the feedback I needed to refine my idea and confidently move forward. As time went on, I rented out a space exclusively for my boot camp, purchased more ideal equipment, stopped running marketing campaigns that didn't convert and hired team members to shoulder the load of running a business -- and scaled faster and faster with every change I made.
From starting to scaling: Hiring experts
Once you win the race to market, you're going to attract interest from people who buy into your idea. You might even hit a winning streak and build what looks like (for now) a six figure business.
But, eventually you'll hit a plateau. You'll have to do the majority of the work at first, but eventually your business will grow to the point where you'll need to hire extra hands to continue to scale.
You'll get to a point where you need expert-level sales copy, websites, videos, graphics, legal protection and so many other things. To become an expert yourself in just one of those areas would take you a good five years, and that's five years of effectively leaving your business without a CEO.
Don't do that. Instead, hire people who have already put in their five years to become experts in those areas, or have a gift for it and the drive to become an expert.
That's what I did with our sales team. My vision for Fit Body Boot Camp is to improve the lives of 100 million people through health and fitness by 2025. In order to do that, we need to sell 34 franchises per month. That's why I hired the head of sales at another rapidly growing franchise to lead and level up our entire sales team. Since then, we've dramatically increased the average number of franchises we sell per month, and I can focus on growing the Fit Body Boot Camp brand on a national and global level.
Your idea might be worth a million dollars, but that doesn't matter if you can't bring that idea to market before your competitors. Don't worry about being perfect; take action first, then course correct, and when you hit a plateau hire the experts so that you don't have to become the expert yourself. Once you do, you'll scale your empire at breakneck speeds, while your competition struggles to break out of your shadow.
Entrepreneur Editors' Picks
These Co-Founders Are Using 'Quiet Confidence' to Flip the Script on Cutthroat Startup Culture and Make Their Mark on a $46 Billion Industry
My 7-Year-Old Daughter Started Selling Eggs. Here's What She Taught Me About Running a Startup.
Why You Need to Become an Inclusive Leader (and How to Do It)
Career Transitions You Can Make in Your 40s and 50s
Billionaire Naveen Jain Is an Expert at Disrupting Fields He Has No Experience In. His Secret Sauce for Building Multi-Million Dollar Companies? 'You Have to Come as Naive.'
4 Principles to Develop Next-Level Leadership at Your Company
This Filipino American Founder Is Disrupting the Beverage Aisle by Introducing New Flavors to the Crowded Bubbly Water Market