Not only about big investment – A guide to bootstrapping a travel startup

Mike's Opinion:

This article contains inarguably stellar advice. But while reading, one angle to play devil's advocate occurred to me pertaining to point #3: If you don't just build, you may not have the same opportunity to really get a feel for what doesn't work, why it doesn't work, and find the right pivot into something that does, with those early mistakes acting as a potentially valuable guide going forward. This can be especially valuable and arguably even required learning if it's your first business. Failing, as long as you really learn something, can be a worthy experience. This mentality is best-tolerated and even encouraged in Silicon Valley. Proper market research is always prudent, but any sort of anecdotal evidence (e.g. a verbal commitment vs someone actually shelling out cash for your product) may only go so far. At least in some cases, a robust prototype at a minimum may be needed to get conversations with and attention from the people with whom you hope to do business, much less get them to open their wallet or make a real commitment. This of course depends on the level of your connections and perhaps cunning in your chosen area of the market. What Stephen did with RezGo to build for a customer he already secured is certainly a near-perfect scenario, and kudos to him for that. Another common excuse for entrepreneurs who build before doing their homework is that they believe are creating something the world didn't know it needed. And that may indeed be the case. But, as implied, it's better to raise capital in that scenario than try to bootstrap because those types of successes are exceptions to the rule. I am not advocating that anyone build blindly - just exploring that side of it. Ignore any of the advice in this article at your own peril!

-Mike

Article Excerpt:

So you’ve got an incredible, game-changing idea for a travel startup and now you’re trying to figure out how to fund the business.

If you’re an avid reader of Tnooz, TechCrunch, Mashable, and the other media sites that showcase technology startups, you’re probably thinking that your ticket to gold is an investment from a movie star, big name venture capitalist, or well connected angel investor.

The reality, however, is that you’ll probably be bootstrapping your travel startup.

If you believe the hype, you may be living under the false assumption that in order to be successful you have to take on multiple rounds of funding.

Over the last 14 years, I’ve bootstrapped three different technology businesses, all of them with varying levels of success.

My most recent business, Rezgo, is now six years old, has been by far my most successful and, I’m proud to say, built without taking any outside investment.

Here are just some of the things I have learned over the years that may help you bootstrap your travel technology business.

READ THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE: Not only about big investment – A guide to bootstrapping a travel startup.

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