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  • Startups: The Curse Of Copying

    Don’t worry about imitators, plan for them – focus on the value proposition – stay close to your customers and keep “blowing up” the company for futurity. Your real opportunity is in delivering known and unanticipated value.

    It is widely known that first to the market, usually gets the spoils. Yet, something is often overlooked: you have to create such an impact that you devour market share or develop a product so unique, that the business model is not easily replicable, which is usually not the case.

    Many businesses have the unfortunate quandary of investing incredible amounts of time and resource into launching their product, and soon after, a competitor pops-up with an eerily similar contraption and without much barrier to deeply penetrate into the original market. No it’s not right, especially after all the work you’ve put in – but yes it’s fair: and many times, copying a successful business with conspicuously few deviations – is a business model of its own.

    I started Upstart: Business and Management for 20-40 Year Old Professionals, even though I knew that there were credible and valuable young professional sites and business sites, but none that framed the experiences of 20-40 year old professionals exclusively. I found a niche, but we are all vulnerable to value: the lack thereof. So as much as it matters to have an original concept, or that imitation is a headache, yet a standard part of business – your real opportunity is your effectiveness in delivering known and unanticipated value to your customers.

    Sarah Needleman of the Wall Street Journal, illustrates this in her article, Coping with Copycat Businesses.

    Needleman states in Coping with Copycat Businesses, “Since launching two years ago, scores of Groupon clones have emerged. In Boston alone, a hub that the company touts as one of its biggest and most successful markets, it now has 33 rivals, according to an article in today’s WSJ. “

    Don’t worry about imitators, plan for them – focus on the value proposition – stay close to your customers and keep “blowing up” the company to stay relevant and unique, to close gaps and find risks and to capture futurity before it arrives.

    Good Luck.

    Calvin Wilson
    Founder and CEO
    Upstart: Business and Management for 20-40 Year Old Professionals
    Calvin.wilson1@verizon.net
    http://twitter.com/Upstart__Nation

    Filed Under: Startup/Entrepreneur

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