Get Revenue

Revenue is the new growth! So hack revenue – not growth!

VCs have been talking about ‘profit’ since We/ WeWork’s IPO fell apart in summer 2019, but we’re now hearing the message ‘get revenue’ loud and clear.

VCs telling startups to find revenue means two things

  1. There isn’t as much VC money as there used to be
  2. VCs are looking to de-risk investments in volatile markets / uncertain futures and their chosen tool is ‘revenue’

Of course, revenue & profit are different things – generally, profit is low or negative if growth is high – but revenue means that a company can slash costs & flip to modest profit if a market turns bad.

So, how do you build revenue?

Building revenue is something that I help a lot of startups and scaleups to do – so give me a shout if you want help – but here are some tips:

1. Find partnerships – other companies have revenue needs too – if you can help them, you help yourself

2. Focus on customer success – if you can help your existing customers grow, they will buy more of your services

3. Swap the Hackathon for a Sellathon – can you find 3 new customers in the next 24 hours? Try it – it really works!

4. Find smaller customers – corporates aren’t going to buy, and if they do, it will take years not months – so find customers who make quick decisions (often startups)

5. The more complex answer is to refocus your product / service. In other words, coronavirus has forever altered the product / market fit for many companies and we need to rethink the proposition. Part of this ‘rethinking’ is to create quick and small commercial experiments at high speed and ‘learn’. A great way to start this is with The Breakthrough Business Model Canvas or if you are a larger startup, you may need to do some ‘unpicking’ first – so use the Scaleup Canvas to trace back to your original startup product to market fit.

Remember, in a crisis – and running out of cash is the biggest crisis you’ll ever face, we’re all startups! So, treat everything as a test or hypothesis – find the quickest and cheapest way to test the concept and capture the data / results. Then be honest about what those results reveal so you can fashion your next test / hypothesis and go again.

In effect, it is a race against time – can you test enough revenue options to find one that works before the cash runs out!

So don’t delay.