The term “pivot” has been a buzz word in the startup space for many years, with the perception ranging from mild to extraordinary. There a reasons why a startup may choose to pivot and as an investor, it should be expected within the portfolio. But what are the benefits of a pivot? And why is it necessary for a Startup to pivot? In this article we will explore some of the reasons and benefits of a Startup pivot:
Focuses the solution
No one solution can be everything to everyone. When a technology startup first releases a product or prototype, it does it in Beta phase, so that it can test and evaluate the offering. Feedback in the early stages of development is vital to determine where the product will have greatest impact. Conversations around the first prototype will reveal, new ways, best fit and enhancements.
A startup pivoting its product focus, is doing this because market, customers and demand are driving the changes. The pivot should be based on results, data and analysis and a need to “keep it simple”.
Define the target market
A Startup pivoting its offering can also be the result of demand for the product. Take facebook as an example. Facebook was initially built for university students, then for consumers and more recently for business.
Startup pivots should also allow for expanding markets and customer demand.
Analyses of all aspect of the sales process should be reviewed. Event a minor shift in how the product is positioned can make a huge difference to a Startups bottom line. Ensuring there is product demand and immediate value to target prospects, ensures the startup knows exactly what its target market is looking for.
Sometimes it is necessary for a startup to pivot to stay competitive and improve margins. Startups need to adapt to stay up to date and to be relevant to customers, demands and needs. The world around us is changing quickly, and so startups need to be agile with competition and new features to the product.
Making an adjustment can improvies the Startup’s position in the long term future, even if the current pivot is minimal. Be sure to calculate the risk and reward before making and implementing the decision.
Accept the realisation that even the best ideas require evolution, adjustment and pivoting to enable the business to move in the right direction.