For those of us who worked closely with ambitious start-up social enterprises during the tail end of the first dot.com bubble, the business strategy known as ‘build it and they will come’ is a familiar one. In those days, most thrusting young (or, at least, young at heart) web-based social entrepreneurs had a varation on ‘build it…’ as their elevator pitch. It was a great elevator pitch, you could get it across easily even if you were only going one floor and the pitchee was concentrating on something else for most of the journey.
The least painful stage for ‘build it and they will come’ to fail at is stage 1. While it seems frustrating, those web-based social entrepreneurs who generally lost least money (theirs or other people’s) in the early years of this century were the ones who didn’t actually manage to find the elusive techie who could complete the website to their detailed specifications based on their tiny budget. Slightly more cash was frittered away by those who ...more