Five Kinds of Startup: Hybrid

Service + Product, Add Digital, Add Retail, Everything Else
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If you're doing startup right, you're going to be doing things that haven't been done before. Your company might not fit neatly into the Product box, or the Service box, or the Digital box, or the Retail box.

This is fine. Actually, it's great. It's also not a new phenomenon or strictly a startup phenomenon. Hybrid companies have existed throughout history. But in startup, especially modern startup in the Internet era, Hybrid Startups are much more common.

A Hybrid Startup is the combination of one or more of the four kinds of startup I've previously covered. Actually, any combination is viable, but there are some key components to the four I'll discuss here that make them unique. There's also a fifth option, Everything Else, just in case your startup does something so new that it doesn't fit any definition at all.

While all businesses are unique, there are really only a few kinds of startup. How these companies operate, grow, and succeed will depend on what kind they are. Thus, a lot of the decisions you will make and paths you will take will depend on what kind of startup you're running.

Service + Product is the most common Hybrid, and it's often used as an accelerator for the business in which the startup operates. Back in the installment on Service Startups, I briefly discussed how a Service Startup can scale their efforts by making their service repeatable and more efficient. Then that Service Startup builds a framework or methodology so that some to most of the service work can be done either automatically, say with software, or by someone who doesn't need as much expertise in the field and is therefore less expensive as a resource.


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