StartUp Founders: Create More Opportunities For Opportunity (Activate Dormant Contacts)
As a startup founder, creating magic out of thin air is a significant part of the job. However, success often relies on chance interactions and opportunities that arise unexpectedly. According to James Sinclair, a startup consultant, “the more opportunities for opportunity is really what scales You is kind of those chance interactions, those things.” In other words, the key to success in the startup world is being in the opportunity business, always open to creating chance opportunities.
One of the most accessible ways to do that is by leveraging your connections on LinkedIn. For founders who have been in the workforce for some time, there is no reason not to download their entire list of connections, including email addresses, and organize them by vertical, industry, job role, and more. Using this list, founders can send targeted mass emails or use personalized sequences through platforms like HubSpot to reach out to their contacts.
Of course, it’s essential to segment the list and be thoughtful about the approach. Sending a generic mass email to someone you connected with on LinkedIn years ago is unlikely to yield much of a response. Instead, founders should craft targeted messages that align with their contact’s interests and priorities, demonstrating how they might be able to help in the coming year.
The power of chance encounters and luck in the startup world cannot be understated. Take the story of Brian Chesky, co-founder of Airbnb, for example. In the early days, when the company was struggling to get traction, Chesky met an influential investor who became one of their biggest supporters. Chesky’s chance meeting with the investor is often credited as the turning point that took Airbnb from struggling startup to global success.
As Sinclair notes, “all these successful startup Founders they will tell you elements of luck that just change the game for them just something lucky just happened to happen at the right time for a chance meeting, a chance opportunity.” But luck doesn’t have to be entirely random. Founders can create their luck by being open to opportunity and leveraging their network to create chance interactions. By doing so, they increase their chances of success in the startup world.