There really is no doubt about it, the small business and startup landscape is almost unrecognizable from what it used to be. Connections can be made easier, products and services offered have become unimaginably more diverse, and the speed at which these products and services can be offered is even more mind-blowing than how easy it is to become an instant expert on pretty much anything you can scroll across online.
Point being, the world of startup businesses was significantly more difficult to survive in 50 years ago. Back in 1967, if you wanted to start up a business, you needed a good idea and marketable product, an already existing population to which you could make sales to quickly, and funding –and lots of it. These things were a necessity much like it is in the landscape today, but besides there being that many fewer competitors back then, it was much harder to find success because the speed and rate at which you could sell more units and reach a wider market place was much more difficult to get ahold of due to the lack of the internet.
Here is a breakdown on a few ways that startups have it much easier today than they did 50 years ago.
1- Marketable reach stretches across the world instead of just around the corner.
50 years ago, the idea of a world wide web connecting all of us together across the globe was an idea that only existed within the confines of a science fiction book or on the screen of a movie or television show. Having the ability to interact with someone on the complete other side of the world or even state instantly was out of the question beyond the simple and very expensive long distance telephone call. This limitation of exposure and interaction was what limited a startups client base.
Bring us up to today, and now there are almost no boundaries whatsoever to the people who you as the startup can reach out to and turn around into clients. Being able to have a sleek website that can automate sales 24/7 and precisely explain your services and products are major tools that we have today that were only dreamed of back then, and although fewer of your customers are physically walking through the door of your brick-and-mortar office, your startup is still able to thrive. All this because of the innovation of digital commerce, a utility that was unheard of back in 1967.
2- Communicating with customers and investors is as easy as logging on instead of walking in.
Another innovation beyond just an online presence is how you as a client can interact with the company. Many websites have a chat feature built in, or you can instantly message them through an online form, and you can even reach out to them through social media platforms like Twitter or Instagram and Facebook to share your thoughts or concerns. The most popular however still to this day is the phone call, which has also gone through some major upgrades over the years.
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The phone call is not as simple as it once was, but even still, it has become more streamlined to help you and the startup company get both of their needs met. Startups have it easier today because a technology known as Hosted VolP, or Voice Over Internet Protocol. This is a fancy term for what we may know better as online calling services. These kinds of innovations make it easier for you as the potential client as well as the company to better reach out and connect with one another seamlessly.
3- Products range from much more than just physical and tangible objects and services.
It certainly is a completely different landscape than it was 50 years ago, and that is all due to the addition of a completely new world of opportunities that was brought in and expanded more and more over the years –digital technology.
A modern day startup certainly offers a different set of products and services than it did back in 1967. SaaS, or software as a service is certainly a realm of products that were inconceivable back in the day, as well as all of the other services based solely around technologies.
4- Learning and finding an edge is easier than ever with all the available info online.
Speaking of utilities that were dreamed of but not yet fully and readily available, communications with clients and investors were limited to face-to-face meetings, physical mail, and costly long distance phone calls.
Expensive and time-sucking air plane travel from coast to coast was the official way to conduct business back in 1967. If an investor wanted to learn more about your startup, their office would ring up yours and schedule a face-to-face. Although this is the most thorough manner of investigating a startups worth on the side of the investor, it was also the only way to learn anything about the startup in question. More than that, you as the startup were certainly lucky enough to catch the eye of the investor due to a very limited number of ways to get the business world’s attention.
Now investors can search online for any startups that are starting to shake up the business landscape, instead of having to hear about it exclusively through the grape-vine. Online platforms like TechCrunch, Forbes, and Business Insider are just a few of the bookmarked websites that investors keep their eyes hovering over.