A startup has an ideal journey right until the point they realise they could use advice, direction and some funding. That’s when they hear about an accelerator located around the country that offers three- to four-month programs where you can get those things you are long seeking.
Here are 8 reasons why you would need an accelerator:
1. Encyclopedic support
Whilst running a startup, founders can find themselves stranded or walking a lonely and challenging road. But when you are associated with an accelerator, founders receive a huge moral support in the form of mentors. Apart from the guidance and direction, mentors can also provide emotional support, share experiences and knowledge to help founders overcome their difficulties.
2. A full roster of activities
Accelerator programs may seem like a short affair of few months but these programs are jam-packed with a lot of activities that benefit you and your startup. Many times accelerator programs do vary depending on the type of industry. But a typical program includes meetings with mentors, “demo day” presentations, networking, feedback sessions and social activities. A lot of information can be absorbed from these events and even more, can be applied directly to your startup.
3. Access to Investor
Accelerator programs can help connect you directly to interested investors who are drawn to accelerators in the hopes of discovering the next big thing. Many investors are invited to watch the presentations during an accelerator’s “demo days”. There is also time to meet and network with investors. This opportunity can open the door to additional funding offers, especially when the investors see that the accelerator program has helped you further develop your startup into something that shows the potential for return.
4. Accelerated knowledge
An accelerator program packs in so much information from the years of experience and skills that each mentor or accelerator manager has amassed. This accumulated form of information allows you to speed up what a startup is doing. Instead of reinventing the wheel, a startup can leverage their years of accumulated wisdom to launch your startup in a more calculated, strategic way. Clearly, this can improve a startup’s chances of success.
5. A doorway to future customers
With accelerators, you can now get an access to your target audience who have been included at demo days so that they are aware that your startup exists and you are disrupting the industry your startup comes from. All the marketing from such activities helps create an early buzz and also gives you enough time to work towards keeping your future customers ready and waiting for your launch.
6. The big picture & long-term view
It is almost impossible for founders of startups to look at the bigger picture beyond the initial few months during their nativity stage. However, it is much more vital to work to achieve their long-term goals. Accelerators can act as lighthouses that can help startups find better prospects and opportunities.
With mentors, you will see the convolution that can arise in the course of time and can guide you to take the right steps to overcome it.
7. A trampoline
You may think your startup is doing very well and you are having an exponential growth, to a point when you realise your growth rate is now stagnant and you have reached a plateau. That’s when you need a personal trainer in the form of an accelerator who can kick you to the next level you couldn’t figure out on your own.
8. Continued support even when the program ends
The accelerator may end in a few months but that doesn’t mean the support does. One can continue to access mentorship, inquire about talent, seek investors, or get feedback. The alumni network is always there to help in any form with long-term relationships developing at accelerators.