New business ideas require total focus. For this reason, the entrepreneur needs to avoid the temptation to go after multiple targets when first entering a market. Because we have limited resources, we should dedicate all our efforts to dominating one single set of customers. Spreading our efforts over multiple goals will just mean that we fail in all markets.
The concept of a beachhead market is derived from military strategy. The idea is simple. Choose a point where you can enter a territory and win a base from which you can go on to conquer the next sector and so on.
Randomly selecting a market for a beachhead is a quick-fire recipe for failure. Here are some criteria for helping you select your beachhead.
- The segment is economically attractive.
- You can access to segment easily, either by your salesforce or by other promotional methods.
- You have a strong and credible value proposition that you can offer customers in this segment.
- You can deliver a product that is complete enough for the consumer to purchase (see later for MVP).
- There is no entrenched or powerful competition that can “strangle you at birth.”
- The market can lead you to other markets. In other words, winning in this market will help you win other markets.
- The segment is compatible with the goals and values of the team
Select a beachhead market for one of the following start-up enterprises.
Plover have created a battery-powered electric toothbrush. The costs of the master device and the replacement brushes are significantly cheaper than that of the competition. Plover is planning to keep prices low by selling directly to the customer over the internet.
Vinnie Lombardo is a wine lover. He has many friends in Sicily who are struggling winemakers. They make great wines, but the can’t compete with the famous names or the large corporate concerns because the operate on such a small scale. At the same time whenever he shares a wine from one of these small wineries with friends, they ask him how they can get a hold of some bottles. Vinnie wondered how he could get the small winemakers and his fellow wine lovers together. One day as his boyfriend was looking at some arts and crafts on Etsy, Vinnie had an idea. Why not have Etsy for wine?