I was just at the Superior Rustproofing for the first time. The garage is 20min drive from my place and it is located in a rather secluded crescent, definitely not a kind of place you would pass by. The way I learned about them was through Dealicious.ca and a coupon I bought for oil spray rustproofing. If it was’t for the coupon, there was no way on earth I would have known these guys and trusted them with the job.
After trying a couple of times to book an appointment for a month later, I finally go there. The manager, who took my car in, immediately points out to the different levels of service and I could use the coupon towards more expensive services. Kudos that he’s trying to get more sales and get me to spend more at his shop. Not only he found a new customer that is going to talk about him but also he would get the customer to spend more and would charge extra on taxes that would easily make up for the money he spent on the coupon. The question remains if the customer a returning customer?!
(Established) Businesses are all about 3 fundamental things:
Production (be it building hardware, software or whatever),
Operations (i.e. administration, human resources, management) and
Marketing and Sales
Money is made in ONLY step 3 (Marketing and Sales). Operations is ONLY about moving (effectively and efficiently) from Stage 1 (production) to Stage 3 (Marketing and sales).
Start-ups are also quite similar but different in ONE key aspect from established businesses:
Learning & Discovery (of customers & market)
The customers are unknown in start-ups and as Steve Blank in “The Four Steps to the Epiphany” asserts the emphasis for start-ups in early phases MUST be on Learning & Discovery (of your market, your customers, what problems they TRULY value and so on).
Only after a start-up has truly figured this one out, does it transit to Marketing and Sales.