The decline of Blackberry RIM – three key lessons for entrepreneurs

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The decline of Blackberry RIM – three key lessons for entrepreneurs

30 October 2013    |     admin     | No Comments

The Canadian smartphone manufacturer Blackberry RIM is currently on the rocks. This is in stark contrast to five years ago, when Blackberry dominated the business smartphone market, and the iPhone was, to the corporate world, merely the new kid on the block. What then can we learn from the decline of Blackberry RIM?

Blackberry RIM

1) If you are first to market it’s always harder to stay on top

With its natty, easy-to-grasp, keyboard Blackberry was the first to penetrate the corporate marketplace with a smartphone that became addictive for millions. However, being first to a marketplace presents peculiar challenges, as Netscape also discovered to its cost. There’s immediately an onus on the successful business to be on the defensive, thus developing a damaging siege mentality: To be avoided like the plague.

2) Focus on what people do more than “markets”.

Don’t just be happy with charts from the marketing wonks; go out and be amongst users of your products. Find out their daily needs and wants. People’s needs and habits change. You need to be on hand observing those changes, and reflecting on the real-world implications for your product line.

3) Being brave enough to fail makes you less likely to fail

Finally, there needs to be something almost madcap about your passion for innovation. Occasionally you may release a real turkey, but by being ever-flexible, and super-innovative, you are far more likely to keep in step with the times; and more likely to prevent your company from sinking in to obsolescence.

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How to become a successful Tech Entrepreneur

20 September 2013    |     admin     | No Comments

According to research London has become home to 15,700 new businesses in just one year. The biggest Tech apps, such as “Mind Candy” and “Hailo”, came from humble beginnings by amateur tech entrepreneurs but became huge success stories, all thanks to the ease of setting up a tech business and a flurry of new ideas.

But having an idea is one thing. Getting it off the ground is another. London is now a global hub for tech start-ups (alongside Berlin, New York, Tel Aviv – and of course Silicon Valley) with a larger and better connected ecosystem, providing new start-ups with easier access to talent, investors, guidance and inspiration.

In the near future, smartphones, tablets and wearable technologies (such as Google Glass, smart watches etc.) will become mainstream enabling everyone to interact anytime, anywhere with almost anything, because an increasing number of physical objects will become internet enabled. 

 

enterpreneur

 
Things to think about before setting up a Tech business:-

  1. You need to come up with a tech solution that will solve problems for a significant sector of consumers and it needs to be user friendly
  2. Once you have developed a simple version of your program you’ll need to test it in real conditions
  3. How and where will you demonstrate your product to help create demand? Be prepared to adapt your product based on the feedback you get
  4. You’ll need a long-term business plan to show how your product will impact the market.
  5. How will you arrange funding according to the potential of growth of your Tech Services?
  6. Can you get a team together with the right mix of technical, product design, sales, marketing and commercial skills? Some things can be outsourced but there should ideally be in-house competency across most of these areas from early on

Challenges you face when launching a tech start-up:-

 

Challenge

 

The first challenge is building something from nothing – doing anything for the first time can be hard.

 

As a start-up you have to launch a new service, ship your first version of the product, employ your first member of staff, find your first user and convince someone or some business to be the first to spend money with you.

 

The second challenge is raising the money you’ll need before you start to make revenue.

If your product is already in the market it makes it easier for investors to analyze how their money will affect the performance of your business – and ultimately their return on investment.

If you don’t have this you’ll need to find investors who strongly believe in both your vision and the capabilities of the founding team. You also need to put in even more work demonstrating demand for your service, a comprehensive business plan and a big enough potential up-side to counteract the unknowns inherent to pre-product angel investing.

Finally, managing your own psychology can be a deal-breaker. Lots of entrepreneurs talk about the personal psychological challenges of launching a start-up.

 

Top tips for setting up your own tech start-up:-

  1. Find one or two co-founders to build a team with balanced skills, including technology, sales and marketing and product design.
  2. Focus on a significant customer problem and really investigate whether it is a painful problem for enough people before you invest heavily in any solution.
  3. Build a network of mentors who buy into your vision and want to support you.
  4. Get into Tech City. There are loads of shared work-spaces, free educational events and focused networking opportunities for tech start-ups.
  5. Get out of the building! Build and change both your product and your plans based on continued interactions with real potential customers.
  6. Don’t give up.

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