Prototyping New Ideas: From Zero to One
On June 17th, Ross Beyeler’09, founder and CEO of Growth Spark, visited the Summer Venture Program. Beyeler shared lessons he learned on taking first steps in exploring ideas that has potential as a business.
Beyeler’s most important lesson was to always focus on the customer. You need to set a goal to interact with potential customers because they know what the problem is and can help you define your offering. Beyeler pointed out that you need to focus on the problem and audience, not on what you think as the ideal solution. Beyeler said finding the demand is crucial before moving on to the next stage.
After talking to customers and confirming that there is a demand, Beyeler recommended doing small experiments to figure out what value you can bring to your potential customers. Beyeler emphasized to find the easiest way to do experiments and prototype is by prioritizing your assumptions, plan the experiments for a defined time, and intentionally use the lowest tech solutions possible. The brand is more about creating an experience for customers than visual identity.
Beyeler pointed out that it is alright to not be perfect in testing ideas. If you come up with an idea that could possibly solve your customers’ problem, talk to the customers to see if there is demand and carry out small experiments to see how you can bring value to them.