Growth5 Blog

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Do You Have Anyone Willing To Pay For What You're Selling?

If you don't than you should read Jason Cohen's blog titled "Why getting 10 customers is all that matters". I came across this blog recently in VentureBeat and voices of past clients resonated in my head. Statements such as:

1. "I've worked in the industry and I know what our customers want."

Are you sure? Unless you are an industry leader and have many years of experience and a crystal ball to see into the future maybe you know what your clients want and need. Remember you're one person with limited insight into what your potential clients need.

2. "Build it and they Will come because this is a tool that does everything for them easily."

I have heard this more times than I can remember and it is so untrue. With the ease of access to the internet and everyone building and creating new products and ideas every day it is irresponsible to think that customers will flock to you. First do you know what competitors are out there and where they are in comparison to your company? The creation of a product is the easiest step. Getting the word out and attracting customers is the most difficult and staying on top is even more difficult.

3. "In conversation my friends and family have stated how great a tool this would be."

Your friends and family are not the best test market. Of course they are going to back you and tell you what a great product it is. The question is does your target audience think it would be a great tool? Do you even know who your target audience is? If you aren't out talking to potential customers than you could potentially be missing who you are building this for.

4. "We're not going to get anyone to pay for this until it is built."

Smart people in the industry are going to understand what you are doing and be able to give you good insight into what the product really needs to be able to accomplish. Your target audience is your bread and butter and if you can't get them to agree early on that they would pay money for what you are doing then maybe you should look for another line of work. In the end the only thing that truly matters is can you get anyone to pay for your product.

In our experience we have seen that it doesn't matter what industry you are in this advise is of the utmost importance and should be followed very early on in a start up business. We have been preaching this to clients and potential clients consistently and the ones that listen get some where the others aren't around any more. Its time for entrepreneurs to listen to advise of others who have gone down this road before.

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