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Customer Development

sethstersethster subscriber Posts: 1
edited August 2015 in Business Planning
So I've just recently finished doing customer development for my startup and I'm currently in the process of putting together the MVP. Customer development was a lot more work than I thought it would be, but it was also much more valuable than I thought it would be as well. In essence, I learned a lot and I'm super glad I did.

If there is anyone wondering what Customer Development is, then I would highly recommend reading Giff Constable's book "Talking to Humans." It's brief, gets the point accross and can be read for free here: https://s3.amazonaws.com/TalkingtoHuman ... Humans.pdf

For you Customer Developoment gurus out there, what resources/methods do you use to make the process as painless and effective as possible?

The tools I used were:
1) A basic spreadsheet to keep track of contact information for potential leeds, if I've called them or not, if I sent them a thankyou email and any other pertinant notes on the person that will help me remember them.
2) A basic spreadsheet for taking notes on the answers to my questions during the interviews.
3) A basic spreadsheet where I distilled the answers from each interview down to simple data points.
4) Evernote for writing down the personas.

Lastly, I just ran across a new tool called Javelin that appears to unify all of my above steps which would have made my life a whole lot easier. If anyone is about to begin customer development and is looking for a system to use then Javelin might be a big help.

You can check out Javelin here: javelin.com/?ref=jy_eNY_P




  • jv1597jv1597 subscriber Posts: 5
    Don't you think customer development is a bit too people focused? It sounds a bit tedious.
  • sethstersethster subscriber Posts: 1
    "Don't you think customer development is a bit too people focused? It sounds a bit tedious."

    I'm guessing this is sarcasm but if not: wouldn't you want to know your odds of product/market fit before you spend months or even years building your idea?

    Talking to people beforehand is definitely tedious, but not as tedious as developing and launching something that nobody wants.

    Or maybe you've figured out how to sell your product to some group other than people? If this is the case then I would love to know how to do that too.
  • jv1597jv1597 subscriber Posts: 5
    I didn't mean to sound sarcastic, sorry 'bout that. I thought you might keep it simple, and find out what the simple statistics are for your business facet, and use a form on your website to have the customers build up your database. You can probably gather data based on your consumers clicks to find out more about their interests, and then pull some stats from the database.
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