Have a great idea for a new internet startup? Think you can revolutionize an industry if you made the perfect app?
Don’t start with designing and building your application, start with selling it.
Why? Here are two scenarios to consider.
Mario has a great idea for a web application that will give plumbers an easy way to track leads, schedule jobs and invoice customers. He has some unique ideas that will save plumber’s time and make them more money.
He decides to invest $40,000 of his own savings to have his application brought to life. Then he will start hitting the streets and sell it.
Luigi has a great idea for a web application that will give plumbers an easy way to track leads, schedule jobs and invoice customers. He has some unique ideas that will save plumber’s time and make them more money.
Instead of deciding to use his own savings and building the application immediately he decides to call on 20 plumbers to learn more about their specific pains and needs. During these calls he gets some very valuable feedback and builds some rapport with people who deal with the problems he is starting to solve. He works with his prospects and involves them in the process of drafting the specifications for his application. He listens and turns their thoughts and ideas into possible application features. Once Luigi has all of the features documented that he wants to implement, he asks his 20 plumbers to each pay $2,000 and they will get a copy of the application in 6 months. With a one time fee of $2,000, they can use it for life at no additional charge.
That’s a pretty good deal to his prospects; it’s going to save them hundreds each month in convenience. It also puts money in Luigi’s pocket immediately. This process validates Luigi’s ideas, gives him seed money to build his application, provides better information for what to include in his app, and gets him his first customers. By involving his prospects in the early stages, they feel involved and have contributed. They are more committed to the project and will almost always buy it.
In Scenario 1 Mario is risking $40,000. He has to think of all the features to add, assume that is what people want, and then go sell it once he is completed.
In Scenario 2 Luigi is living risk free. He has collaborated with industry experts to add features he knows they need, he has found his first paying customers, and those customers have also funded his project completely. He has zero out of pocket expenses and can continue to sell to all the other plumbers in the world and make his millions.
There’s a lot that goes into building, selling, and growing a web-based startup. We’ve worked with countless startups and even built a few of our own. Learn from the people who do this every day. Our team wrote the complete Web Startup Guide, and it’s yours for free.