Guest Post: Avoid These 3 Mistakes Startups Make (and Why They Fail)

Starting a business sounds like a great idea. With today’s technologies like easy access to online marketing, eCommerce, and templated websites, it appears even easier to start a business today. But, unfortunately, it’s much harder to create a successful business. Investopedia.com shares that “as of 2019, startup failure rates are around 90%.” Even if you’ve had a rocky start, Crispy Confessions shares tips to avoiding common mistakes that can help you become a success story with your dream business. 

Photo credit: Unsplash.com

Mistake #1 Doing Everything Yourself

Especially when money is tight, it’s tempting to do everything yourself. After all, hiring someone to help is risky and takes time and money. But, delegating is a top skill to manage a business effectively. 

Solution: Hire an Expert and Use Tech

Indeed.com recommends hiring freelancers to “fill the skills gap.” However, recognizing when it’s time to delegate or outsource to a freelancer or remote worker takes effort, too—finding things the freelancer can do for you helps to free up your time to work on your business. For example, bookkeeping and other administrative duties are often outsourced to virtual assistants. When you do it right, hiring freelancers can be cost-effective and move your business from surviving to thriving. 

Your business can also benefit from easy-to-use tech tools like financial reporting software. This helps you keep track of your business performance, and you can also use this software to put together a spending roadmap so that your goals stay within reach. Implementing tech tools can make business operations much simpler and help you save precious time and money.

Mistake #2 Marketing Incorrectly

Since many businesses start because the founder is passionate about a particular product or service, it’s easy to fall into the trap that says you know your product so well that you know how to market it. Sadly, the truth is that most business owners are too close to their business to recognize the most effective ways to market it. 

As Tony Robbins taught, “if you cannot find a way to market your product or service, then your business will have a hard time getting off the ground.” One of the reasons startups fail boils down to marketing.

Solution: Bringing in a Marketing Expert

Inc.com suggests, besides making sure the person is truly a marketing expert, making sure they are a “strong cultural fit.” Of course, you’ve got to know they’ve got the marketing skills. Astekweb.com suggests looking for these top skills:

  • Strategic thinking
  • Communication
  • Analytical skills
  • Project management
  • Technical skills

Outsourcing your branding and logo design to experts is a start. Even better is if you start with a marketing expert to create a catchy business name and slogan, then expand on this foundation. 

If you want to take a more hands-on approach to marketing your business but don’t yet have the necessary skills, consider earning an MBA degree. With this degree, you’ll gain business-relevant skills in marketing and learn about operations management, accounting, and organizational leadership as well. 

Mistake #3 Focusing on the Wrong Things

Since there are many moving parts to running a business, if you’re doing everything on your own, you often find yourself juggling bookkeeping, sales, social media, etc. When you focus on things that aren’t part of your natural skill set, it takes longer (which costs you more).

Solution: Outsourcing

Bringing in outside help for the areas that you struggle to complete effectively, such as email marketing, bookkeeping, web design, or social media, makes a massive difference in your business. When hiring, look for candidates with time management skills, freelancing experience, and a work process.

Avoiding these three mistakes and implementing these solutions can help your business save time, money and not only keep your business from failing but allow it to grow into your dream business.


Thank you to Elijah Dawson, at lookforjobshere.com, for writing this guest post. If you liked this post, then please also check out Elijah’s other guest post about improving your home work space.

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Hi! I'm Helen and I am a 32 year old biracial millennial mom raising two multiracial children. I am a writer, English consultant, and social media manager. I am a self-proclaimed chocoholic.

4 thoughts on “Guest Post: Avoid These 3 Mistakes Startups Make (and Why They Fail)

    1. Yes absolutely. With poor leadership, there is not purpose or guide. With excellent leadership, the start-up has the drive to succeed, the means to get there, and the people who can get you there.

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