Valid or not? A potential million dollar question.

Posted by Ventures Online on Fri Oct 09 2020
So, you have this incredible idea that you think will change the world. In your mind’s eye you’re seeing the millions of lives you’ll impact, the mounds of cash you’ll accumulate and your name on the Forbes list. The crazy thing is, other than yourself and maybe your inner circle no one even knows about this idea, and you don’t know if anyone else would even want to use your product.

Validation is the process of determining whether your idea has any merit outside your personal perspective. It’s about asking your target market the important questions, “Do you need this?” and “Would you use this?”. All too often an entrepreneur will put months of work into an idea without ever speaking directly to their customer. In the world in which we live time is money, making the validation process even more important because it allows you to move on to your next idea quickly if the one you have doesn’t have the legs to go the distance.

How does one do this validation? Well, the following are a few tips as to how you can go about validating your idea.

1. Write down the problem you’re looking to solve and your product concept - The aim here is to clearly outline the why and how of your idea, allowing you to communicate the goal of your product clearly.

2. Create a customer profile - Determine exactly who your customer is, what they’re characteristics are and the extent of the impact of the problem you are solving for them. This customer profile is a set of assumptions that if proven true should make your product offering the best solution for your customer.

3. Talk to your customer - Starting with your own network of friends and family, share your proposed product with individuals that fit your customer profile. In interviewing these potential customers make sure your line of questioning starts off with an investigation into the problem and assumptions made thereof and then present your idea. The aim here is to find out how big of a problem what you identified really is and only thereafter examine the appropriateness of your product concept.

4. Determine buying interest - Lastly, it is important to note that liking a product and buying a product are two different things. As such, would the customer you are interviewing buy the product. If not, why not and if yes, what is the main draw card. This question is particularly helpful in determining your product’s main value proposition.

Thus, before you set out to look for funding or even consider bootstrapping an idea make sure that your idea is worth your time and energy because both are invaluable.