Entrepreneurial marketing: activating the four P's of marketing strategy in entrepreneurship.

Author:Osiri, J.K.


The definition of entrepreneurship--the exploitation of opportunity without regard to resources--confers a level of sanguinity to the person who is engaged in entrepreneurship. This forward-looking personality is captured by the dimensions of entrepreneurial orientation which includes risk-taking, proactiveness, and innovativeness (Naldi, Nordqvist, Sjoberg, & Wiklund, 2007). Three elements are critical to the success of any start-up: (1) the opportunity, (2) resources and (3) the team. From the founder's point of view, entrepreneurship begins with "opportunity." This means that a founder must first identify an opportunity before it is then evaluated and exploited. Evaluating opportunities is a way of reducing risk. However, in order to exploit any opportunity, the venture must be imbued with the necessary resources required to ensure success.

Although entrepreneurs seek to take advantage of opportunities creatively, this does not imply that resources are not required to launch a new venture; generally, successful founders stretch limited resources without compromising the quality of their offering. Studies show that founders that took less venture capital in the start-up phase tend to outperform those that took more venture capital (Florin, 2005). Also, founders that resorted to venture capital funding before taking their company public generated significantly less wealth for themselves and were less likely to remain as CEOs of their ventures after the initial public offering (Florin, 2005). This further underscores the importance of creativity in driving the success of entrepreneurial firms and suggests that human capital might be the most important element in any start-up because it is people who think and act creatively to add value to a venture. No amount of resources can create value by itself because they are "static." People, on the other hand are "dynamic." They are the most important asset in any organization because, not only are they capable of improving their skills and gaining new knowledge, they are also primarily responsible for shaping an opportunity, stretching limited resources, and ultimately adding value to other assets. For these reasons, people are the link between opportunity and resources. It is a start-up's human capital that can generate resources and use them parsimoniously to fully exploit an opportunity. If a dumbbell were to represent the entrepreneurship concept, human capital is the handle that holds both ends of the weights, which separately represent opportunity and resources...

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