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How to Kill Your Startup in 5 Simple Steps

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Kill Your Startup


If you’ve started a business and decided you want to drive it into the ground, here are five sure-fire ways to get you there faster. Rest assured that these marketing strategies have all been battle-tested by countless entrepreneurs before you, and are guaranteed to kill all but the most stubborn startups.

1. Don’t talk to anyone who looks like a customer.

Kill Your Startup

Talking to prospects and customers when you’re building your product or service is grossly over-rated. What could they possibly know that you don’t already know? After all, you started this business. They just buy stuff. Make sure your product moves from your mind to production untainted by other human beings. Spend all of your resources developing a full-blown product that you know people need – even if they don’t. And never release it until it’s perfect. Then, once your resources are depleted, release it.


2. Make your website look like a self-serve buffet.

The thing about prospects is that they’re perfectly capable of digging through ridiculous piles of information to find what they need. They do it all the time. So make sure your website lays out tons of information your prospects can pick over. Don’t make the mistake of trying to package your information to match the decision cycle your prospect is going through. That risks being useful. And never ask for contact information in exchange for valuable content. You want to keep all your web visitors anonymous so you don’t inadvertently generate any sales leads.

3. Don’t let prospects find you.

Today, buyers are pretty self-sufficient because they can be. Armed with Google, they can find out everything they need to know about what you sell. So when they’re looking, you have to make sure they can’t find you. Fortunately, the range and scope of social media and inbound marketing tools is staggering, so in your confusion why don’t you just skip the whole thing. Don’t get any help. In particular, don’t even look-up what SEO means. If you can’t resist the Siren songs of a blog, Twitter, and LinkedIn, then make sure you immerse yourself in those social media platforms completely, chasing every link, video, and hashtag so you can entirely wipe out your weekday mornings.

4. Don’t pursue prospects.

Just because it’s quite easy to identify 50 prospects who, by all rights, should be buying your product, don’t be tempted into chasing them around town with intriguing marketing campaigns. If prospects aren’t prepared to work to find you (and we took care of that in our last step), they don’t deserve your attention.

5. No peeking.

The fastest path to growth is to double-down on what works. So make sure you have no clue what works. Don’t measure anything you do or, alternatively, measure every single thing you do. In the first case you’ll crash around blindly, and in the second, the piles of data you produce should wipe out your weekday afternoons, relieving you of the pressure of success.


If you’re determined to tank your business, don’t reverse these five strategies and create a repeatable marketing system. Repeatable marketing systems allow you to achieve a high-level of consistency, scalability, measurement and success – and that’s something you’d really rather avoid, right?



About Drew Williams

My name is Drew Williams. I’m an author and marketing entrepreneur. “A what?”, you say. I call someone who’s passionate about building businesses a marketing entrepreneur. So that’s me. Full Profile | Google+