Let’s face it. Startup ideas are a dime a dozen. Everyone these days seems to have the next great idea which will bring them fame and fortune. Spoiler alert, they won’t. Yet for those intrepid souls who persevere through the ideation phase of their startup, how does one get to the minimum viable product? How can you tell if your startup idea is validated?
We are teaming up with Kernal to address this very topic. Kernal allows you to take your startup idea from a napkin idea to an exit. It is a private community where you can not only build in public, but find users, investors, co-founders, and more. You can apply for access here.
Startup ideas come from so many different sources that we wrote an entire article on it. But having a good idea is just the beginning. You will need to make sure that the idea itself can be validated and that you can actually build a minimum viable product around it.
In order for this to happen, you will need market validation.
According to Harvard Business School, market validation is the process of determining if there’s a need for your product in your target market. Why is this important? Because even the best ideas are meaningless unless you can have customers at scale pay a price for your offering.
Without proper market validation, especially at the early stages, founders could waste their limited resources on pursuing a startup that leads nowhere.
The data supports this. Failory interviewed well over 100 startup founders who had failed. Their findings show that 34% of startups failed due to the lack of product-market fit.
These startups built a product for a market that didn’t need it or wasn’t willing to pay for it.
It is essential that you don’t make this mistake. This is precisely why we have included several frameworks and tools for market validation so that you can save time, money, and heartbreak.
Jim Semick, co-founder of ProductPlan, created the lean market validation. While similar to the Harvard Business School methodology, the lean market validation has more steps and is meant for rapidly testing a startup idea.
3. The Startup Grind Methodology
Startup Grind has a wonderful framework for validation that doesn’t cost a single dollar.
4. Arnab Ray’s Startup Validation Framework
Entrepreneur Arnab Ray came up with a simple graphic for startup validation. The goal of this framework is to provide a structured approach to founders that allow them to save on costs and analyze their ideas with the hope that they can understand the potential of their idea clearly. More importantly, the strengths, weaknesses, and risks are demonstrated.
You can also use his free tool to validate your idea here.
5. The Failory 4-Step Framework
Failory has a 4-step framework for validating startup ideas in 2023.
6. SPD Load’s Idea Validation Method
SPD Load provides a detailed framework for idea validation.
But how do you know if you are creating a product with real value? SPD Load also provides this handy checklist.
Although all six validation frameworks we shared were different, they had common trends. When validating your startup idea, it is essential to write down your goals, have a relationship with your customer, experiment, and constantly listen to feedback to improve your offering. This is why Kernal is such a great community for validation. Founders have access to thousands of people who can provide feedback, guidance, and even the first sales.
We hope this article sets you on the path to validating your idea and arriving at not just an MVP, but a successful MVP that will be useful to your customers.
In this article, we are going to explore the history of venture capital and how it has evolved over the years. Now before you bemoan how history is a collection of dates, places, and people that no longer matter, you need to realize how paramount VC history actually is.
A stealth startup is a company that operates in "stealth mode" i.e actively hiding its activities. Coda, Instabase, Clinkle, Theranos were all stealth once - with various degrees of success. Is stealth a smart move or a smokescreen? In this article, we break down the pros and cons of stealth mode for tech founders.
This is my homemade methodology to assess early-stage startups. It's a simple but thorough checklist that prospective founders, investors, and employees can go through before committing their time or money.