Business ideas are everywhere. But ideas that sell and bring profit? Not that easy to find.
Starting up a business and building it is always a big risk to aspiring entrepreneurs who want to succeed. You pour in all your efforts, countless hours, restless nights, and of course – invest a lot of MONEY on it.
Yes, it takes all that to scale a biz. But the big question is – will it sell? Is there a need in the market for this idea that you’re betting on?
One of the most crucial steps before investing what you have into a business is doing your MARKET RESEARCH. With this, you will know if there is an actual market for what you’re selling?
Is there a demand for this?
What pain point of people does this product/service solve?
What is my Unique Value Proposition?
How much will people be willing to spend for this?
Who are my customers and where are they?
All these and more are questions that you should be asking and answering to help you know if your business deserves a shot.
Oftentimes, we have these business ideas that we’ve always wanted. We are in love with them that we forget to check the facts. This is a mistake that many entrepreneurs face.
It’s not what you want. It’s what the customers want that matters.
So, we need to learn how to listen to opinions and feedback, consider numbers, and look at the facts.
And this is how you do that – VALIDATE.
Validate means testing if the product or service that you want to invest on is something that people will buy.
We want to actually see if people will take money from their pockets to buy what you’re selling because they actually want to. And we want to do this before spending money on buying your supplies or getting it manufactured.
WAYS TO VALIDATE
There are several ways to do validation. You don’t need to shell out a big amount of money or conduct formal surveys to do this.
VALIDATION METHOD 1
One of the very practical ways to validate a product is to make an MVP – or a Minimum Viable Product.
No fancy packaging or digital marketing. You have a product with it’s benefits in your hand and sell it as soon as you can. Start by introducing it to your friends, family, colleagues, or other people you can approach.
Sell it to them and see if they will buy. Get your validation from people who will actually buy instead of just saying that they ‘will buy’.
VALIDATION METHOD 2
If you are selling something that cannot be produced and you can’t physically present it to them, you can always try doing a survey.
Be clear about your approach and reach out to 20 people that fit your customer persona. If it is a diet plan, for example, connect with a fitness enthusiast or a trainer or an athlete. Communicate this with as many people as you can and take note of their response.
VALIDATION METHOD 3
If the idea is something that you know has an existing demand, and you also cannot produce a few MVP versions of it, you can always try doing a competitor analysis. See if this is already being sold in the market and if people are buying it. If the demand is there, then you know that people are going to consume it.
Many people are intimidated in this step. Competitions will always be there and doesn’t mean you should not continue with your idea. Work on strengthening your Unique Value Proposition and find ways to offer a better version.
Now you may not always get a ‘yes’ or positive response on this. And it is equally important to take note of that. If the people are saying ‘no’ to your product, ask them the reason why and how they’d want to improve it.
Is it the price? The quality? Does it solve a pain point or not? Whatever the reasons are, take note of them.
Use these facts to continually improve your product before you do another round of validation.
And when you’re confident and see from facts and response that you have a strong product/service, then you can invest more knowing that you’re going for a product that has been teste.
IDEA > VALIDATION > EXECUTION > SALES
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