As entrepreneurs, our minds tend to run a mile a minute, always busy with new ideas. Sure, it’s a wonderful trait to have and it’s probably what led so many of us to build our product: we see problems and our minds start racing with ideas on how to solve them.
However, when developing your business, you’ll need to take into account that there are constraints on time, money and resources. You need to keep the entrepreneurial spirit alive while maintaining realistic goals in mind – resilience is key. This requires you to be able to identify what activities are key to reaching the next step in the development of your business and prioritze.
1. Build your Value Proposition
The first thing you need to consider when developing your business is how you’re going to make people want to buy what you’re selling. What problem does your product or service solve? Especially when starting a new business, most people won’t know about your product or service and how it could benefit them.
To build a great value proposition you will need to understand the market you are targeting. A step further, you’ll have to understand the pains they have and how your product will solve this. In addition to this, you’ll need to recognise what objectives you have within that market. Are you bringing something completely new, or perhaps improving on a concept that already exists?
2.Develope an MVP
Once you’ve defined your value proposition, your next step will be to start creating an actual Minimum Viable Product (MVP) – the most basic version of your product or service that a potential customer would be willing to buy.
So think about this and what you need to do to get there, be it improving the durability of your product or implementing a new feature/update on your platform. You should be clear on what steps are indispensable for efficient business development and which ones are “nice to have” and can be postponed – especially because in addition to Product Development, you’ll have to focus on other needs such as your first hires, or certifications that your company needs to enter the market.
You don’t need to set a timeline for these changes just yet, but they should be ideas that are necessary to implement soon to ensure that your business continues growing and prospering. Keep in mind that you must be diligent and realistic – and ask yourself the right questions.
3. Attract and Get to know your Customers
There are two main ways you can attract customers. First, you can start by placing your product or service in front of your customer segments – think traditional advertisement.
The second option is to create a sense of urgency that makes your customers feel like they need your product – through content curation and harnessing the power of social media for example. How will you know which strategy to go with? It will depend a lot on your customers, and on the ROI (Return On Investment) you expect. Take the time to define these, and don’t be afraid to invest in marketing.
Once you’ve managed to attract customers, your next challenge in terms of business development will be to actually keep them. You want to ensure that the people who use your product are satisfied, keep on using it – and even recommend it to their friends.
Again, there are many ways to get there: wonderful customer service is one of them, customer surveys and rewards is another. Don’t be afraid to experiment until you find what works as you develop your business. You also need to learn to empathise with you customer, put yourself in their shoes and understand their pains. This will guarantee that your product stays customer focused and develops based on your customers’ needs and not just what you think those needs are.
The goal is to understand which strategies are working, and at what cost. That’s why you must be diligent in keeping track of everything setting proper KPIs (Key Performance Indicators).
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