In the aftermath of the DotCom Bust, bootstrapping is an in topic. These days it is almost trendy to be bootstrapping your business.
Of course, millions of entrepreneurs have known that all along and concentrated on quietly building their businesses.
Bootstrapping takes time. Your growth is limited by the cash you have coming in the door from customers. Since your available cash is limited, you have to keep your expenses low. That means you cannot hire and expand as quickly as you might like.
With bootstrapping, the chances of having your business be an overnight success are lower.
That’s why marketing guru Seth Godin’s comments on being an “overnight failure” resonate so. He notes:
” … some people have trained themselves to believe that the only kind of success worth having is overnight success. That if you don’t hit #1 the first week, you’ve failed. That if your interface isn’t perfect out of the box, or if you don’t get 5,000 people standing in line at the opening of your new store, you’ve failed.
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The challenge for observers, investors and partners (like the publisher who took on Kathleen) is to avoid the temptation of buying the media infatuation with the overnight success story (which rarely happens overnight). The challenge for marketers is to figure out what daily progress looks like and obsess about that.”
Smart bootstrapping entrepreneurs do not buy into the hype of needing to be an overnight success. Instead they revel in running a business that is an “overnight failure” that gradually turns into a success over time.