One difference between buying a stock and hoping it increases in value and short selling a stock is the percentages of potential positive and negative returns. They are inverse.
Max Return: 100% of the value of the stock on the day you short it.
Max Risk: Unlimited Loss Potential.
Traditional Buy and Sell:
Max Return: Unlimited
Max Risk: 100% of the value of the stock on the day you buy it.
Let’s compare this to your investment in operations and fulfillment versus marketing.
Operations and Fulfillment:
Max Return: The difference between how cheaply you can achieve your stated outcome and how cheaply you could buy the outcome as a service.
Max Risk: The entire value of your investment PLUS the opportunity cost of using your mental and physical capacity on a project that has a small maximum return instead of focusing on an area of your business that has unlimited potential return, such as….
Max Return: Limited by the max potential addressable customer base that you can profitably market to.
Max Risk: 100% of the cost of the marketing (labor, google / facebook / print costs, etc.).
Don’t get me wrong, someone has to do the operational stuff. I think it is smart to outsource as much of it as possible when it does not provide you a meaningful advantage that leads to profits greater than the risk of assuming the costs yourself.