5 Steps to Build a Startup

Do you dream about changing the world? Have a passion for entrepreneurship and technology? You want to identify problems and find ways to solve them? If you answered yes to all of these questions, you could create a website or app that would make people’s lives easier. In order to do that, dreamers, entrepreneurs, and developers usually come together and collaborate to build a startup. The term “startup” is fluid and has changed over time, but generally it means a newly established business working to solve a problem where solutions haven’t been discovered and where success is not guaranteed. Many start as simple ideas. Successful startups like Uber has a company valuation of US$51 billion, while AirBnb (created in 2008) is currently valued at US$25.5 billion.
 
 Got an idea? That’s a start. Once you have an idea of what you want to create, consider these steps to build a startup if you are an absolute beginner.
 
 1. Validate your startup idea

Mobile app development costs a lot of money. It’s crucial that you double check the viability of your idea. Find out whether there’s a need in the market for the app you’re introducing. There are many ways to validate your app idea: ask friends and family, go to networking events, identify trends on mobile apps in app stores, create a landing page and track the visits on the web, conduct a survey and also gather feedback. If you’re in dire need for guidance and lessons on building a startup, consider joining the 60 Days Startup Program from Pollenizer that’ll help you develop ideas — for free. Another option is joining a startup incubator program such as GEPI (Global Entrepreneurship Program Indonesia) that helps build early stage startups to get to growth stage through trainings, workshops, fund allocation, knowledge transfer, and network building.
 
 2. Build a kickass team

IMAGE: SCIENCE FICTION

You need help. One does not simply walk to Mordor alone — that’s why Frodo got Sam. But seriously, one of the greatest tasks in building a startup is finding a team that is dynamic and passionate about your idea. Each member of the team should preferably have a set of experience or skills that proves to be instrumental for the startup. Determine what talents are going to be the most vital in turning your startup idea into reality. Is it a developer to build the actual app? Or a social media addict to get the word out about your product? Whatever it is, make sure you find people that work well with you and know what they’re doing. Once you have a feasible idea you can recruit people on Angel.co, which lists 394,334 active candidates to date, including 117,285 developers and 24,520 designers, with 6000+ new candidates being added weekly.
 
 3. Get a roof above your head

IMAGE: HUBUD

For real, you need a place where you and your team can build the startup stress-free and affordably. Right now, the epicenter of the world’s tech businesses is in San Francisco, a gorgeous city, very innovative and has plenty of tech talents. It’s also where Facebook and Google made their nest. But the costs of living there are incredibly huge and come with a lot of legal hurdles for foreigners. Some people have been turning their living rooms to an office space, but that won’t be ideal once the team gets bigger. Coworking is the next big thing in the world of startups. It’s essentially a style of work that involves a shared working environment that enables independent activities, which is ideal for the early stages in startup companies. Regionally, Jakarta is where most businesses settle down, and there are a few good options for shared working environments in the nation’s capital. The paradise island of Bali is also an emerging destination for tech startups, offering affordable coworking spaces and low cost of living with the perks of world-class beaches and enchanting cultures.
 
 4. Grow bigger and think about making money later

Sure you want to make big bucks, we all do. However, focusing on customer growth is arguably the first priority in early-stage startups compared to revenue. It’s good to be reminded that you initially went into the business because you wanted to produce and promote a helpful mobile app. It would only be logical to spend more time to focus on the product, figure out how to facilitate the needs of users and how to get people to use it. Utilizing growth hacking strategies and offering unbelievably friendly costumer service can help jumpstart your customer growth. Growing your user base is also vital because you need to dominate as much market share as possible before your competitors do, and you need to do it on the clock. Once there’s a buzz about your product, it’s easier to generate revenues. Every startup is different and this may not work for a lot of people, but it’s worth considering especially if you don’t have a big budget. 
 
 5. Prepare to crash — 95% of startups do

IMAGE: WIKIMEDIA

Your startup has gone viral globally, your team is made up of well-educated and highly-skilled people, and you’re generating millions in revenue each month — you wish. The reality is, it’s incredibly hard to start a tech business: you’ll go broke, you’ll have important team members leave you, you make a bad move, face legal challenges, and the list keeps going. It may be overwhelming to accept failure, but it’s necessary in order to grow better. Learn from these startups’ mistakes and continue to innovate strategies that can set things right for your own startup. Most importantly, learn to deal with problems, keep your passion alive, and never give up.


Originally published at www.onwards.com.

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