It starts with caring enough about yourself and your dreams to stay committed to achieving your goals. Giving up is never a good option! You have to care enough about yourself to firmly believe that you deserve success and the good things that come with it.
When it comes to creating a successful business, innovation is very necessary. But not everyone is a great innovator. But there’s always a way round.
Copycats VS Inventors
White Castle was the first fast food operator in the United States, opening in the year 1921. The company is also renowned for popularizing the hamburger at a time when Americans were reluctant to eat ground beef, due to the negative publicity about unsanitary practices in the meat packaging industry.
Their assembly line food preparation approach and spotless restaurants were innovative and very successful in the American Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions. And they were imitated like crazy, first by “Little Kastle” and then a long list of restaurants with names that switched out either the “White” (Blue Castle, Magic Castle, etc.) or the “Castle” (White Fortress, White Tower, etc.)
White Castle developed a market for fast food. Others recognized there was a market and they made their various attempts to get a piece of it. That’s competition. That’s America, but not in America alone…
Rocket Internet is a Berlin-based Internet incubator. A firm that “identifies and builds proven Internet business models and transfers them to new, untapped markets”. Others might describe them as a start-up “knock-off shop.”
Rocket creates imitations of already-successful start-ups. And rather than compete with those companies in their own markets, Rocket targets them in different geographic markets. In some cases, they end up selling the imitation to the original company.
Rocket’s mission is to become “the world’s largest Internet platform outside of the United States and China.” They are ridiculously successful at it.
Heard of Zalando.com? That’s Rocket’s clone of shoe and fashion website Zappos. Lazada and Mizado? Those are Rocket’s Amazon copies in Jakarta and Istanbul, respectively. In 2010, they sold their Groupon knock-off, CityDeal, which had only been in operation six months, to Groupon for $126 million in cash and stock (worth a heck of a lot more after Groupon went public).
And the imitation doesn’t stop there. Heard of Team Europe, Springstar, or Found Fair? These are among numerous companies that have copied Rocket Internet’s business model.
The most important thing is to identify a workable business model.
The simple explanation is that a business that is turning profit, has a large customer base, is active, etc., is a business that is employing a workable business model even if its owners aren’t fully aware of what it is.
In some cases, you won’t be able to find a new geographical area to duplicate an already successful business model. In that case, you’ve got to do something to differentiate yourself from the originator. How can you do it better, cheaper, faster or otherwise more desirable for the customer? That’s a matter of strategy more so than model.