Life at a successful startup can be full of company happy hours and free lunches will be abundant. The morale nearly never suffers in these situations as people can see how their work is impacting the trajectory of the company. People even are willing to take below the industry standard of pay as they consider the company to be family. This cohesion and all of the other positive things that happen when a startup is a success plummet into a nightmare when things start to go wrong. Much like in sports a winning team’s problems never seem to surface but the real issues start when they start to lose. The following are some of those negative situations that happen when a company is failing as well as reasons the company could be failing as a whole.

Lack Of Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is imperative for startups to have success in today’s business landscape. This can take an entire department in itself so at times it could be better to outsource these jobs. Digital marketing companies already have connections with certain publications and can allow content created by your company to be featured simply by sending a few emails. Social media also needs to be on point and this should not be a platform simply to promote your own content or advertise sales. Spark conversation by sharing industry articles with a certain take on the situation at hand. Engaging with followers is imperative as it is quite easy to unfollow a social media account that acts more like a commercial for the company than actually adding any content of value. Avoid generic content as this can be a waste of money as quality content is what really converts. The last thing a struggling company needs is to waste money on another clickbait article that does not drive any traffic to their website.

People Start Talking Negatively About Management’s Decisions

In this post about struggling startups it says “There’s nothing more morale-sapping than having the WiFi cut out half a dozen times daily or having the photocopier continually breaking down. Provide marketing tools for them to be productive with”. Many issues that arise when people start talking negatively about management and their decisions is not being given what they need to thrive. Setting the staff up for failure by accepting a project that they have no chance of hitting the deadline on can frustrate everyone involved. What needs to happen is the staff is giving everything they need to succeed then thwart any negative talk.

There are going to be those second-guessing decisions so reprimand these people in private the first time. If they are caught doing this again it is time to do this in public as you need to set the tone that negative talk about the company will not stand. Management has more knowledge about what is happening in different areas of the company than a regular staff member. Negativity can spread throughout a small startup so cut out the negative employees if this continues to be an issue. The last thing a struggling company needs is an employee undermining every decision made by upper management. This does not mean to value employee feedback as it can be important but there is a much bigger difference between complaining just to complain or addressing a problem then offering an actionable solution.

Employees Start Leaving In Hoards

Once a startup begins to struggle there could be hoards of people leaving for other opportunities. This is normal as employees want to make sure that the company they are working for will be able to employ them well into the future. The employees that stick around until the company turns its luck around are those that need to be rewarded. Loyal employees that do great work need to be paid accordingly as well as given certain perks. Perks that can entice valuable employees to stay with the company are things like free lunches but the most attractive one is the ability to work from home.

Mistakes Pricing Your Products

Finding the right price points can be difficult as a startup without name recognition charging too much can have them laughed right out of a pitch meeting. Offering a low price regardless of margins can make the product seem low quality so it is imperative to know pricing standards in the industry. This can be done through research and reaching out to different companies in your niche covertly to see how your prices measure up. The right price point will rid the startup of those trying to get the highest quality of work for pennies on the dollar. The price point will also entice those looking for quality as well as a bit of a deal. The right clients can make startup life much easier and the right price point can improve your quality of clients.

Changing Company Goals or Products Offered Too Frequently

One mistake that many people running a startup can make is that of trying to modify what the company is doing constantly. This could include rebranding multiple times or offering a wide array of products instead of specializing on just a few that they do well. People in the industry will see this as grasping at straws so this can even hurt brand image. This does not mean to modify certain areas of the business where it makes sense but doing it month after month does not allow the changes to make a difference. Gather as much data as possible before making a change so you can see how this change has negatively or positively impacted the startup.

Startups are not always going to be close-knit groups that thrive and make it big. There can be struggles and even downright failures but addressing the above issues can help start the upward trajectory of a startup that is tanking.