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Bulletproofing Business Ideas

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5 key questions for testing the strength of your business ideas

5 key questions for testing the strength of your business ideas

Published in: Business, Technology
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  • 1. Bulletproofing Business Ideas5 key questions for testing the strength of yourbusiness ideas
  • 2. Short and sweet is the rule Test the strength of your idea by answering each of the following five questions using less than 15 words, in less than 15 seconds:  Who are your target customers?  What problem are you solving for your target customers?  What must change about the status quo in order for your offering to succeed?  How will customers know if you ‘delivered the goods’?  How will you know if your product succeeded?© Arnold Wytenburg
  • 3. Question #1: Who are your target customers?  Be specific. Very specific.  Consider different customer roles: • The ‘economic’ customer – the person who pays you • The ‘functional’ customer - the “end user” • The ‘beneficiary’ – the person who gains the benefits accruing from a purchase • The ‘decision-maker – the person who decides to buy • The ‘decision-influencer’ – the person who shapes the decision to buy© Arnold Wytenburg
  • 4. Question #2: What problem are you solving for your target customers?  Be clear & precise  State it in the customer’s words • “we make the customer fulfillment process more efficient”  Say it “in numbers” • “we help users do X three times faster, thus saving $Y”© Arnold Wytenburg
  • 5. Question #3: What must change about the status quo in order for your offering to succeed?  If you don’t know, ask your customers  The usual candidates include: • Current thinking • Organizational structures • Existing technologies and methods • Political and economic will • The competition© Arnold Wytenburg
  • 6. Question #4: How will customers know if you ‘delivered the goods’?  This is your “benefit statement”  Qualitative outcomes • Look for simple metaphors and analogies to help describe these  Quantitative outcomes • Say it in numbers© Arnold Wytenburg
  • 7. Question #5: How will you know if your product succeeded?  Express this in business terms • Marketing: – Positioning – Penetration – Profitability – Growth • Financial: – Revenues – Profits – Leverage© Arnold Wytenburg
  • 8. Putting your answers to work The more often you ask these five questions, the more likely your business idea will be robust  Remember the “Three R’s” of bulletproofing business ideas: • Review • Revise • Repeat  Do this individually and as a team  Involve ‘outsiders’ – customers, prospects, competitors, industry experts, mentors, advisors© Arnold Wytenburg

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