The Learn Startup by Eric Ries is a must-read for anyone starting a business. It’s the most efficient way I’ve found to test your concept and launch your startup successfully. Lean Startup Methodology is about doing the right things at the right time to maximize the chances of success for your startup.
I am a student of startup business (which is a special type of business indicating the most challenging toddler months-years of turning your idea into a functioning business) but Eric Ries is and he has spent a great deal of his professional career developing concepts in this book.
Save yourself the headache of trying to figure out working methodologies and read it just so you have the ideas in your head.
You can choose what to do with them but they are good to know from a business expert to you… someone who desires to be a business expert.
95% of startups fail in the first 5 years so you need to know what it takes to succeed and be realistic in your approach.
Here are some ideas I got from the book that will assist you on your journey:
1. Experiment More Before Considering Something A Great Idea
The freedom to experiment and collect info as much as you can on the front end to validate assumptions before considering something a brilliant idea
2. Get Confirmation From Market Before Full Development.
Get Confirmation from the market as you develop your product/service. Really see if people NEED it (or want it but wants can be a bit tougher to sell) and if they would be willing to put their money where their mouth is.
3. Create Your MVP or Minimum Viable Product
The MVP is the first version of your product or service, the cheapest and fastest creation you can make to get valuable feedback to give you more direction on where you should improve your MVP. Lean startup methodology here would refer to beta testing and getting feedback from those who need your product. To sharpen and better that first copy.
4. Develop a PLAN for Mastering Word-of-Mouth in Your Business
Word of mouth is an incredible marketing tool that most people do not know how to fully tap. You can however hyperfocus on the elements of your business that naturally lead to more word-of-mouth interactions for your prospects and customers.
5. Follow The Build-Measure-Learn Loop
Here is the Build Measure Learn Loop from the book. You iterate forever until all of your goals in life are hit. It works for business and for any life project you have. The loop does not end.
The lean startup methodology is about shipping out a version of the product as quickly as possible to obtain real data. Validated learning is the process of arriving at conclusions from this data, based on actual customer behavior – not on the feedback customers may provide through a survey or interview about what they may hypothetically like about a product that they have not yet interacted with.
It is important to not trust customers to know what they want ahead of time. Instead, trust the way they behave with a tangible version of the product and use this data to inform decisions in the future.
The book emphasizes the Fast cycle times of this loop.
Market validation is interacting and testing of the market for your idea and its effectiveness in resolving a need.
lean startup build-measure-learn cycle
To Pivot or Preserve?
Lean startup methodology is about testing the market before you fully dive in. It’s more of a data approach. Strategically targeting your customer and knowing who exactly that is before you produce in volume is important.
How much DATA have you collected to really determine if something is a profitable idea (or worth it for your time and money investment) to keep going?
The lean entrepreneur surveys the market for ideas, find the most cost-effective ways to test those ideas on a major scale and creates a system of incremental development for every aspect of the business designed.
Building a successful startup is not easy to do but can be EASIER if you have a guideline like this book so check it out! Let me know what you think. Here’s a quick 5-minute video you can watch for more information.
An understanding of agile project management could also help here.
Thank you for reading!