“We built it! Why aren’t they coming?”
Pump the brakes. Let’s take a step back to go 5 steps forward:
1. It’s all about face time with your customers. Relentlessly schedule 1:1 interviews. Here’s a goal: 100 interviews in 7 weeks (reference: NSF I-Corps).
2. Complete a Business Model Canvas. Be targeted. For ex, your customer segments aren’t companies, they’re people. “Hotels” vs. “Director of Operations at Mid-Sized Hotels”. Yes, it’ll all feel wrong at first. These are guesses.
3. Set a specific hypothesis to validate the components of your Business Model Canvas. For ex, “HR in the telecommunications industry wants to design their own custom app to get feedback and record metrics on increased productivity.”
4. As you collect data from interviews, start crafting your business thesis. This will include what you do, your customer, and why they care.
For ex, “We create AI that automates project tracking. Our customers are project managers for upstream oil and gas field services companies. We ensure projects are completed 10 weeks ahead of schedule.”
5. It’s a bit scientific. Listen > talk. Note patterns. Iterate. Ask open-ended questions. Ask for intros. Take notes. Use the “5 Why’s” Technique.