The Entrepreneurs Achilles Heel

When I was writing this piece I was struggling to come up with a title that would properly describe what I was trying to convey. In the end I went with “Entrepreneurs….” because I think it sums up the problem perfectly.

We entrepreneurs are at our best when brainstorming new idea’s, coming up with new products to bring to market, and generally trying to add something of value to the world.

But where do we draw the line between creation and personal success?

It appears to me that there are two paths which we can follow each which can give us varying results.

The Entrepreneurs Search for the Holy Grail

The first being the Holy Grail of sorts. We strive to create something of immense value that’s never been done before. This innovation usually takes much toil and effort and can be a very long journey from start to finish.

But is it really worth it? Should we spend such huge amounts of our time and resources on something which we may never find? Is this search for the Holy Grail justifiable or should we take a different approach to product creation.

If we are to be brutally honest with ourselves do we really believe that we can invent something new and successfully bring it to market? Just say we do master up this new creation we are left in a precarious position – how do we know that people will buy from us? Humans are creatures of habit and it could be extremely difficult for an unknown entrepreneur to successfully launch his new invention and for it to be a commercial success.

When do we say enough is enough and try taking a different path?

The Entrepreneurs Dilemma: Innovation v Creation

This other approach is what the vast majority of entrepreneurs do, they find an area where they already have an interest and take inspiration from the existing market. They research the most popular products there and see is there any way of them putting their own stamp on it or by improving it in some way so as to give it their own unique spin. This gives the advantage of being able to create a product, which you already know their is a demand for, in a much faster period of time.

The goal here is not to simply copy the work of a competitor and pass it off as your own – of course that would put you in all sorts of trouble! It’s to see if you can add value to an already popular marketplace and position your creation infront of a willing audience.

It is key here to be able to define your USP ( Unique Selling Proposition or Unique Selling Point) This is what makes your product different from all others and give you an edge over your competitors.

You see when you find an area that your interested in it’s very worthwhile to do some market research. I read an awesome report awhile back about this Super Guru who wrote Hot Reports.

These were short. snappy ebooks which were wrote about a very specific topic and priced to sell at only $7. She detailed how she only ever thought about writing a report after she had Reverse Engineered some of her biggest competitors! The thinking behind this was to make sure that there was already a hungry market for her product BEFORE she even thought about creating it.

I don’t know about you but when I read that I was like “Wow – very smart lady!” She didn’t waste any time trying to invent some new concept, she simply went out into the market and found out where the demand was coming from. She analyzed what the Big Players were doing and then created a similar product with her own unique twist and then gave it to the market. And Boom – she kills it everytime!!

No Need to Re-invent the Wheel

There’s no need to re-invent the wheel when creating a product, especially a digital information one. People don’t expect you to come up with some new amazing, never before seen, way of doing things – if you can answer their questions and give them good valuable content with your own spin on it then your on to a winner.

This is a far faster method for you to see a return on your investment. It’s quite easy to research the most popular areas in your niche, search out the most popular products in this area and then add your own ideas and improve upon them.

Many of you reading this are familiar with the Warrior Forum and in particular the Warrior Special Offer section. How many times have you seen products advertised as the latest and greatest Never-Before-Seen Systems in the World? And how many times has this been the case? I bet zero….

You see these sellers are basically creating the same product over and over again but they add their own personal touch and experiences to it. That is what allows them to have such a fast turn around from initial brainstorming to product launch.

They are not re-inventing the wheel – simply because the wheel works perfectly fine the way it is!

That has been the Achilles Heel for many an Entrepreneur – they over think things and assume they have to start from scratch and invent a brand new product – one which has never been seen before.

I hope you now see that this doesn’t have to be the case. You can, quite easily go out there are create your own product with confidence. Why? because you already know that there is a market for it and once you position yourself correctly there is no reason in the world why you can’t be a success. So get out there and Do It!! But remember not to fall into the “paralysis by analysis” trap which many Entrepreneurs find themselves in..


  • Nikki Jones

    Reply Reply March 18, 2012

    Hi Noel

    Great post I totally agree with you the right approach is to assess what your big competitors are doing then model your system/product on theirs. It is difficult to do when you are a naturally creative person you do tend to get stuck in the brainstorming and planning phase, never moving on to actual action. Plus the fear of getting it wrong is very inhibiting, but this can also be avoided by modelling on the big players (they wouldn’t be doing it if it didn’t work right!).


    • Noel

      Reply Reply March 18, 2012

      Hey Nikki! Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us – I think your right that sometimes we never graduate “…on to actual action” We spend so much time planning and often fall into “paralysis by analysis” that we push on and start seeing results!

      Those guys are our Big Competitors for a reason – because they’re giving the market what it wants – I think reverse engineering what they’re doing and adding your own spin to it could see you achieving success pretty fast! They are successful for a reason so where’s the harm in learning from them & Leveraging their success??

      Nice one – Noel.

  • Paul

    Reply Reply March 20, 2012

    Hey Noel,

    I really enjoyed going through this post. So many wise tips inside.

    I think that newer entrepreneurs are definitely chasing that ‘holy grail’ as in they think they will create that billion-dollar “Facebook caliber” project – but for most of us this just won’t happen. We can however become pioneers within our industries by always releasing products that go above and beyond the masses.

    One thing I’m trying to do in my business is to always give people more than they expect – giving more value than they’d expect from most people’s products – especially online. With this approach I believe you can become well-known and successful simply because word travels fast and you’ll gain repeat customers who will buy simply because you’ve released a new product.

    You’re also right in not ‘re-inventing the wheel’… However I think people are limiting themselves because they’ll do so much market research and see that certain things are selling while others might not be – and then they’ll create the same type of product that has been done over and over again… when in fact I think that going down the road less travelled can be a much more lucrative endeavour than just following the masses – we just have to know how to market ourselves and our products well.

    Thanks for sharing Noel, great stuff!


    • Noel

      Reply Reply March 20, 2012

      Excellent stuff Pauly – you added some very valuable points…

      Over delivering to your customer should be considered a “must” nowadays because it’s so easy to get a bad rep if you don’t deliver the goods! “Be a giver and not a taker” and your business will thank you for it.

      Marketing is key to the whole process – you may have the greatest product in the world but if nobody knows about it then your stuffed :P

      Thanks – Noel.

  • Brooklyn

    Reply Reply March 22, 2012

    You know it seems like overdelivering is actually the anomaly. I am seeing more and more that the ultra successful entrepreneures are the ones that are doing this.

    Marketers are getting smarter and they want to be wowed. I have seen in the sales copy lately that there is a trend towards the OTO with the “Premium Support” aspect. This tells me that customers are wanting the kind of interaction with the creators that has a little hand holding and personal attention.

    I like this trend and I hope that it keeps moving in this direction.


    • Noel

      Reply Reply March 23, 2012

      Very well said – I hope it keeps going in this direction too.
      Anything that helps to keep standards high in our industry is ok by me:)

      Thanks – Noel.

  • Dee Kumar

    Reply Reply March 23, 2012

    I was at a business launch event over the weekend with some very powerful entrepreneurs present (multi million dollar guys) and it was interesting to hear their view.

    The first thing they said is that no idea ever is totally unique. It is always an extension of something else out there. I have believed that for some time but nice to hear it being perpetrated by others. They also said that all you need is to do one thing differently from competitors to make yourself a viable competitor.

    Yep, you can have exactly the same product as someone else, but if you make it either easier to understand, simpler to implement, more enjoyable or simple use better marketing then you have a very viable business.

    The key therefore focuses around your USP and if it is strong enough, you have a winner.

    • Noel

      Reply Reply March 23, 2012

      That’s very interesting to hear the perspective from some Big Players – thanks for sharing that Dee.

      USP is everything nowadays – if you have that and can market correctly and get eyeballs infront of your offer you have a good chance to succeed.

      Sure there are a million other variables but if you nail the USP you have a chance.

      Thanks – Noel.

  • Clare Thwaites

    Reply Reply March 23, 2012

    Hey Noel,

    So glad to find someone else into internet marketing who is also branding themself as an entrepreneur!

    I just wrote a post on my blog about that it takes courage to break out from the mold of a day job and try to have a more free, ambitious future for yourself.

    I think the thing a lot of people forget is that they need to take the time to congratulate themselves on having the strength of mind to even THINK about doing their own thing. – if it was easy, everyone would be doing it! :-)

    Sometimes we can focus on the things we have NOT achieved and feel bad about them rather than thinking positively about things we HAVE done and everything we have learnt and how far we have come.

    To put another slant on it, one of my ex boyfriends had a property portfolio of over £1million and he always used to say, “You know, some of the best deals I have done, are the ones I DIDN’T do!!”

    I would LOVE to talk to you more about some of your business ideas, maybe we could bounce some off each other?! What sort of music are you into? I run a record label, Intelligent Audio. We release deep, tech house and chill out, nu jazz and more. Mostly jazzy/electronic stuff. :-)

    This blog looks great too, really nice start and I will forward to hearing more from you! Have a great weekend!

    Clare :-)

    • Noel

      Reply Reply March 24, 2012

      Hi Claire,

      Thanks for sharing with us;) I guess at heart I’m an entrepreneur and I see the internet marketing as a great way of getting my idea’s out there!
      One thing I actively try and do is to Think Positively – it’s very easy to get down in the dumps when your goals appear to be so far away. I prefer
      to use each day as a stepping stone towards them and I find it keeps me motivated!!

      That all sounds great Claire – I must get myself on Skype sometime and have a chat. I play any type of music really from signer-songwriter stuff all
      the way to Rock!!

      I’ll call over to your blog now and check it out. Thanks for stopping by – Noel.

  • Christine Brady

    Reply Reply March 23, 2012

    Hi Noel,

    This is so true!

    I think this actually paralyzes people to the point that they do not move forward with anything. They get so stuck on trying to come up with the latest and greatest that they can’t see what’s right in front of them. “they over think things and assume they have to start from scratch and invent a brand new product” – you used the example of the Warrior Forum – none of these people are rocket scientists!

    They just think like marketers!

    Many thanks – You’ve just inspired me :)

    • Noel

      Reply Reply March 24, 2012


      Thanks for those kind words – it was kind of a eureka moment for me when I discovered I didn’t have to reinvent the wheel:)
      I know it’s a basic concept but for me this was Gold – I’m glad you liked it;)

      Take care – Noel.

  • Sylvia

    Reply Reply March 24, 2012

    Great points Noel,
    Don’t over think. This synchronize so much with the motivation/business audio cd I listen to in my car. Stop living in your head, hoping and dreaming. Take action! So simple and true “Stop Over Thinking Everything”

    • Noel

      Reply Reply March 24, 2012


      Would you believe I listen to a motivational CD from time to time aswel – and like how Alex speaks about “Taking Action” the guy on the cd says the exact same thing.
      I think it’s about time we listed to these guys and started to kick some ass ourselves!:)

      Great stuff Sylvia!

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