A common mistake that many first-time entrepreneurs make is not marketing their bright new idea. You could even go as far as to say that most think that if the big idea is good enough, then you shouldn’t have to get dirty by having to indulge in any marketing. These individuals still believe in the “Field of Dreams Myth, ” that if you build it, they will come.

The reality has always been very different. Experienced makers understand that you have to get the word out to at least your one-thousand “True Fans.” If you don’t mount at least some kind initial campaign, then your idea is doomed before you even get your first prototype or minimum viable product. Both prototypes and MVPs give users something to handle.

Post-Globalism, the stakes have gotten even higher. Not only do you need to make an emotional case, but you have also got to have some data to go along with your claims. You to be able to show how many people have found your subscription service and that the churn is reasonable.

You could make that case that what you need to do is become a data advocate. For our purposes, a data advocate is a person who champions the collection and analysis of facts and statistics. They are also responsible for coordinating the acquisition of third-party data when there are holes in the primary data sets.

For the record, not everyone will require a significant amount of data to make their decision about your shiny new subscription service. However, if you haven’t taken the time to collect any data. It’s a flashing red light. It’s also quite possible that your new customers even take the time to look at the data once they have confirmed that you have collected some.

When it comes to web-based subscription services, the data collection are automatic. All you have to do is flip the switch for it to work. These requirements are so common that they are built into most online tools.

The upside of being a data advocate is that you can expand the reach of your subscription services. Data Advocates can put together the kind of numbers that are needed for support by patrons, sponsors, and advertisers.

Yes, I can hear the catcalls now. Why would anyone advocate that you cultivate patrons, sponsors, or advertisers? The reason is that real subscription makers don’t starve. They develop multiple streams of income. Each of there constituents represents a different stream of income.

Patrons are people who believe in your work just like fans. However, they are willing to pay an additional fee to commission you to do a specific piece of work for them. You can make the case that the patron relationship is a lot like the client to consultant relationship. They are quite lucrative however you do have to cede part of your control to the patron.

Sponsors are people who allow you do the work as you see fit. However, you do have to thank them and potentially allow them to put their name on your work. Their support can be either monetary or non-monetary or both. It’s really up to you what you ask for from them. The main advantage of dealing with sponsors that they provide a means to scale. The downside is that relationship can take a long time to secure.

Advertisers are people who benefit from placing ads on your website and any printed media. If the first two relationships are ongoing, then the relationships you have with advertisers are purely transactional. You may not have any relationship at all with the advertisers if you are dealing with an ad platform like Google or Facebook.

Currently, you will be able to claim advantages over your competition if you become a data advocate. Once they understand what you’re doing, then you can expect them to try to catch up. You still should retain part of your first mover status by adjusting your data-based services because your data store should be larger and better understood.

Zachary Alexander