The Connection Between Ambition and Business Models in Different Cities


Hatched by Glasp

Sep 21, 2023

3 min read


The Connection Between Ambition and Business Models in Different Cities


In this article, we will explore the relationship between the messages cities send and the success of different business models. We will analyze how different cities attract ambitious individuals and how these ambitions shape the business landscape. Additionally, we will discuss the importance of customer acquisition and the role it plays in the success or failure of startups.

The Influence of Cities on Ambition:

Great cities have a unique ability to attract ambitious people. When walking through these cities, one can sense the energy and drive in the air. However, the messages these cities convey can vary greatly. For example, New York emphasizes the importance of making more money, while Silicon Valley prioritizes power and the impact one can have on the world. The message a city sends matters significantly as it influences the types of ambitions pursued by its residents.

The Concentration of Ambition:

Throughout history, we have seen that most great achievements are concentrated in a few specific locations where people with similar ambitions gather. Berkeley, for instance, promotes the idea of living a better life, while Cambridge thrives on intellectual pursuits. This concentration of ambition creates a unique environment where ideas flourish and progress is made.

The Influence of Cities on Startups:

The message a city sends can also impact its potential as a startup hub. Silicon Valley's focus on power and impact makes it a prime location for startups, while New York's emphasis on finance can make entrepreneurs feel like second-class citizens. The city's message and the concentration of like-minded individuals play a crucial role in the success of startups.

The Messages Cities Convey:

Cities communicate their values and priorities through various means. Whether it's the views seen through windows or the conversations overheard, cities have a way of shaping the ambitions and desires of their inhabitants. For example, Los Angeles places a high value on fame, while Washington, D.C., emphasizes the importance of building connections. Paris, once an intellectual center, now focuses on doing things with style.

The Importance of Business Models:

Moving on to the realm of entrepreneurship, we find that many startups fail due to a lack of understanding of customer acquisition. Entrepreneurs often believe that creating an interesting product or service will automatically attract customers. However, this is rarely the case. Acquiring customers can be an expensive and challenging task, with the cost often exceeding the lifetime value of the customer.

The Cost of Customer Acquisition:

Entrepreneurs must grasp the concept that the cost of acquiring customers should be less than the value those customers generate over their lifetime. Failure to recognize this can lead to a flawed business model. Additionally, for a capital-efficient business, it is crucial to recover the cost of customer acquisition within 12 months.

Scalability and Monetization:

To build a successful business, entrepreneurs must find scalable ways to acquire customers. This means developing strategies that can bring in customers at a reasonable cost and in large volumes. Furthermore, monetizing these customers at a higher level than the cost of acquisition is essential for sustainability and growth.


In conclusion, the messages cities send and the concentration of ambition within them have a significant impact on the success of startups and the business landscape overall. Understanding the importance of customer acquisition and developing scalable strategies to acquire and monetize customers are critical factors for entrepreneurs to consider. To find the right city and the right business model, it may be beneficial for young entrepreneurs to explore different locations and discover where they feel at home and what ambitions drive them.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Research and understand the messages and values different cities convey to determine which align with your ambitions.
  • 2. Develop a customer acquisition strategy that is scalable and cost-effective, ensuring the cost of acquisition is lower than the value customers generate.
  • 3. Focus on monetizing customers at a higher level than the cost of acquisition to create a sustainable and profitable business model.

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