As marketing intern, my initial perspective of what my experiences of the marketing world are may be minimal. However, I have witnessed many start-up businesses both succeed and fail during my time working as the underdog in my internship positions. 
10 Reasons why start-ups fail

As a marketing intern for both ‘Marketing Eye’ and ‘The Hacker Exchange,’ I have challenged myself to take on assignments that many would seem as out of reach for someone my age, a first year university student. Yet, I can tell you how the professionals are doing the business world wrong.

Entrepreneurs cannot be afraid of change, they must be eager to learn, passionate about their goals and what they wish to achieve. There are no opportunities that will ever arrive to you, you must take life by the throat before it takes you, by the throat.

I believe that entrepreneurs are for one; losing sight of the challenge at hand, getting lost in their own visions and ideals that the task at hand seems less important. It is a risk to start and manage a start-up business but no matter where you are in the world, your potential can be reached if you can avoid the trips and pit falls I have seen. 

No# 1. You Cannot be Afraid to Fail.

The first and most evident reason why start-ups fail is because people in our generation are afraid to fail without trail, we’d rather have instant gratification from life. Entrepreneurs are the wild cards of our society, they see a hole in the market and they jump at the opportunity to use it to their advantage.

I believe that all start-up businesses are run by passionate leaders, who don’t want to play by somebody else’s rules. They are the game changers. Except when their business fails and when it does, it takes an even stronger individual to build it back up again and exceed its original net income. 

No# 2. Your Team Was Not Strong Enough

Your team is the life and blood of your company, the parts that make everything run like clockwork. Your team must have the same grit on the success of the business as you do. Therefore, it is also your responsibility as their leader, to not only make justifiable decisions but to also be the role model they aspire to be.

No# 3. Your Financials Went Haywire

Not knowing how to manage and keep the money rolling in is a clear reason why start-ups malfunction. The income and cash flows should be managed on a professional basis. Having an understanding in accounts, marketing and managing figures will give you the upper hand when starting a career. 

No# 4. Your Marketing Strategy Wasn’t Strong Enough

In my experience so far, whilst attempting to start my career, I have been on the forefront of marketing strategies; developing concepts and plans of action to blast company awareness on social media platforms and outperform their competitors.

Your marketing approach should be an in-depth analysis on strategic ways that can help your business gain a powerful stance relative to your competitors. Your strategy can be open to change with consulted dialogue; however, your strategy also works as your base plan. To ensure positive results, this base plan should be considered as a vision and understood thoroughly by your team. 

No# 5. You Lost Your Spark for The Success of The Business

Giving up should not even be on your to do list! You must be willing to push through, and have faith in what you are trying to achieve, if you wish to have ultimate success from your business idea. There is no greater defeat than seeing the mastermind behind the scenes, the leader of your team and the core strength of the company simply surrender. You, the original game changer needs to play the game to win the prize of triumph. 

No# 6. Entrepreneurs Need to Think Different

People who have great ideas have the tendency to stand out from the crowd, because they do not have the same thought process as everyone else. This is more than simply thinking out of the box, it is about getting creative and having an eye for what’s missing in the market. Your strategies, alternatives and admission should be different if you want to build a successful business 

No# 7. It takes a strong individual to implement a successful business

The success of your start-up ultimately depends on how strong you are as an individual. Even though it is a challenge that can be utilised to your advantage, you must have the skills to make it work. Entrepreneurs are intuitive characters that I can see myself fitting in with, because anyone with determination who also knows when to have fun are my kind of friends. They are also strong leaders that can take all constructive criticism, but not invalid opinions by others. 

No# 8. Lacking Customer Experience

Your knowledge and skills in networking with customers should be of a high professional standard. Entrepreneurs need to be able to cooperate and communicate well with other people not just to make valuable networks, but to also show signs of respect to consumers. If your customers feel like they are sold short, you will see a decline in business performance. 

No# 9. Taking Business Advice from the Wrong People

Not everybody likes to see you succeed. This is not to say that you should be consistently on guard or think everyone is out to get you. However, you should be aware of people who appear to be scamming your business or overriding it altogether. Some tactical people may genuinely lack experience, but those who have the intentions to corrupt your business will try to do so. It is important that you consult marketing advice from trusted professionals and experienced entrepreneurs who are from a similar professional background as yourself are the ones that can help you make stronger business decisions. 

No# 10. Your lack of Experience

On most occasions, start-up companies fail due to the lack of experience and professional knowledge of the founder. It is important for any business owner to have an awareness of their market; a sound understanding of how to run a business and manage it from the inside out. Evidently entrepreneurs who lack experience, with no expert advice nor high credentials is at a substantial risk of business failure.


Written by: Aleena Dimopoulos
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Mellissah Smith

Mellissah Smith is a marketing expert with more than 20 years experience. Having founded and built two successful marketing companies internationally, she is well recognized as a industry thought leader and innovator. Mellissah started her career working with technology and professional services firms, primarily in marketing, public relations and investor relations, positioning a number of successful companies to list on the various Stock Exchanges around the world. She is a writer, technology developer and entrepreneur who shares her thoughts and experiences through blogs and written articles published in various media outlets. Brag sheet: #2 marketer to follow on Twitter (2003), Top 150 Marketers to Follow (2015), Top 10 innovative marketers (2014), 60K+ followers on Twitter with 97% authentic.

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