entrepreneurship How To's startups

Art of naming your users in ideation process

[Published on here ]

In the initial days after I passed out from IIT, used to have dozens of business plans everyday, and was already working on few of them in a given month. Later I realised those were not business plans but cool ideas, thats all. After I was done coding, I was hardly able to find users of my app except myself for couple of days. End result is a failed startup – failure will come very soon and is much assured to come. Series of startups, at one time also made me think I should start a consulting outsourcing businesses. Happens.

Then came a little matured stage when idea of solving problems was the key. This was a stage when I was actively looking to find problems in ecosystems and came up with solutions rather discussing with people who are facing problems. End result is a failed startup. You try to articulate reasons for failure but the reason is it was not built for anyone. Your product was a solution to a problem but a solution which was not desirable. Its an assured failed startup too. Know before you fail what you missed in your product.

Then came an interesting stage. Stage where I knew I came up with ideas which are also solutions to some problems, problems not that big but interesting to have solutions of. Identifying problems for which people were not actively looking for solutions but were surprised and excited to find solutions. There were users. I could name those users when I am coding. I had that amazing feeling while working and much more reasons to work now. But the competitors were growing fast, my product lacked somewhere. Problem was solved, but there were too many solutions already. I created and showed people the problem, and was outrun before I could even imagine this would happen. Obviously I lacked somewhere. The answer was sales. Interestingly it was always sales. Even the user requirements gathering, design elements, product delivery, money collection, user on boarding, user retention, competition watch – everything is part of sales. Naming a user and selling to that named users are two different things. But with a good procedure followed to name your users, idea evolution to product is a stronger process for your startup.

entrepreneurship motivation trends

Plan for big data and real time contextual analysis (and drop conventional google search optimizations )

[Update: check Steve Job’s video at the end of this article]

To most of the discussions happening at the time, big data is another fad. Serious players know that world is now changing, and will be driven completely by data in near future. With consumers (and organizations) going from Mobile Present to Mobile First to Mobile Only, Google Search will not really be the biggest thing happened ever over internet as it is today and the context driven actions done inside the apps will be the future. Human interaction ( Going to Google and searching for How to tame a dragon ) will not be required and behavior will change.

42% of organizations have more than 50TB of data with 6% of them having > 10PB (credits: IOUG Big Data Strategy Survey 2012). This is the data of whats happening with physical and online entities as well as human behavior. This is the data which will tell how much time you spent over apps / websites doing what, how many products were sold in your shop at what time and what else was happening in the world which triggered the sale, how much time you spent doing sex and how vigorous was it (check this ), is human race getting dumber or smarter and with what pace, how many cars crossed a particular spot on road in last n years etc.. Data will be infinite out there. 32% of companies use this data by pre-processing it and then loading data warehouse for integrated analysis and 14% conduct big data analysis separately from traditional enterprise analysis (credits: IOUG Big Data Strategy Survey 2012).  The current setup, thus is exactly like what retail commerce was in 1990s. And world is changing so fast that analysis done by Big Data as a separate process might be stale to use it for next day.