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To Grow Your Business, You Need to Handcraft Your Experience With Early Customers

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Editor’s Note: In the new podcast Masters of Scale, LinkedIn co-founder and Greylock partner Reid Hoffman explores his philosophy on how to scale a business — and at Entrepreneur.com, entrepreneurs are responding with their own ideas and experiences in our hub. This week, we’re discussing Hoffman’s theory: the only way to scale is to do things that don’t scale.

Some entrepreneurs still believe in the notion: build it and they will come. But this couldn’t be further from the truth.

For founders to hit a sweet spot and find success, they must reach out to their first customers to get feedback, gain insight and create an experience they will love.

“Hand serve your customers. Win them over, one by one,” Reid Hoffman, the co-founder of LinkedIn and partner at VC firm Greylock, says in the first podcast episode for Masters of Scale, in which he interviews Airbnb’s Brian Chesky about creating handcrafted experiences for early adopters.

Related: LinkedIn’s Reid Hoffman: To Scale, Do Things That Don’t Scale

Serial entrepreneur Patrick Bet-David and host of Valuetainment strongly agrees with this theory. When you’re small, you have a big opportunity to directly connect with customers and clients, explains Bet-David, adding this will help entrepreneurs see the “heartbeat of the business.”

Talking with Entrepreneur’s editor-in-chief, Jason Feifer, in a video, Bet-David says this sort of approach — listening to customers — can help avoid conflict later on.

Related: First on Entrepreneur: Airbnb’s Brian Chesky Shares His Childhood Obsession for Design

Check out the video for his tips on what you can do to seek out these customers and determining how to use their feedback.

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Entrepreneur: Grow Your Business

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