Friday, December 3, 2010

Market Research that works

Here we repeat the Nauvoo Commuter philosophy of starting a business.

Your goal is to prove your hypothesis as soon as possible. Explanation: everyone starts a business based on a hypothesis:
     - People need a more convenient way to purchase books
     - Area residents would pay a premium for coffee that doesn’t taste horrible
     - Senior citizens would jump if you offered in-home computer support
     - People would flock to a discount store if it were located in the middle of Maple Street

You should start some type of business that does the actual business, and test that hypothesis. See how people respond. That is real market research. So you expand as those signals dictate.

Compare that way to that of the typical start up, let’s say an internet-based company: spend six months writing the business plan, do a road show and secure funding. Rent an office, hire a team, buy cubicles and Aero chairs for all of them. Let people bring their dogs to work, because motivating people is your priority. Then start writing the site’s software. Hire SEO experts to bring in traffic. Set up shopping cart and start selling. After burning through millions of dollars, learn if anyone is interested in your product. Or not.

Our philosophy is just the opposite. Start doing the business as soon as possible, on as small of a scale as possible. Today. 

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