Building a Startup in 90 Days | Identifying Potential Customers
The only way to know what a customer wants is to ask them what they don’t want.
This is the essence of what the late Steve Jobs is trying to say here:
“Some people say, “Give the customers what they want.” But that’s not my approach. Our job is to figure out what they’re going to want before they do. I think Henry Ford once said, “If I’d asked customers what they wanted, they would have told me, ‘A faster horse!'” People don’t know what they want until you show it to them. That’s why I never rely on market research. Our task is to read things that are not yet on the page.”
Although I agree to some extent with the above, here’s one thing when starting off one has to be cautiously aware of; these visionaries and influential CEOs did not start their companies on assumptions. They had to figure out who their Potential Customers were first. Then overtime, they would have developed an understanding of the market.
In Dominica and the Caribbean by extension, customers are a unique bunch and to sell a product or service to this market blindly, with no prior knowledge of what would work or not work, is considered business suicide.
To know my potential customer and to give me an idea as to the market for used textbooks here in Dominica, I’m going to conduct a survey. The main takeaway of the survey is to understand the demographic (age range, sex, location), product pricing, competitors and to capture some form of contact information for when the platform launches.
For readers of this series who are interested in the idea so far and might be a potential customer/vendor, I’ve attached the survey below for your perusal.
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Who am I?
My name is Austin Lazarus and I have been in the Startup scene since 2014. My first experience came through the Digital Jam 3.0 App competition in Jamaica. Since then I’ve been to other regional pitch competitions and worked and collaborated with both local and regional entrepreneurs. My most proud moment came from placing 2nd at the NCB Digital Innovation Challenge in Jamaica for innovation in banking solutions.
Now, apart from my day job, I develop and operate the software solution for Restaurateurs and local vendors, BudgEat.