Well, it’s February 2014 and I’m now ready to make things happen. My key actions for this month are 1) have a logo designed for Kariba on hatchwise.com and 2) start validating the idea of the website and ensuring that there is both a need and sufficient demand to justify the approach
1. Logo design
I heard George Ryan talking to Andrew Warner in a podcast on the mixergy.com website:
George is the founder of Hatchwise and he used the interview to talk about how he designed and implemented the site and the issues and problems he’d had in getting it off the ground. I decided to support him by hosting a design contest for Kariba (rather than say, 99 Designs) as I want a logo for the brand so it is instantly recognisable whether the logo is on a website or the side of a horsebox.
I followed the easy to understand process to initiate the contest by specifying my requirements and thoughts for the logo, and paying the money up front. My contest has now been published to the 16,000 designers on the site and I’m looking forward to seeing how they interpret the requirements over the next 10 days
One piece of advice that comes from the lean start up approach is the need to constantly validate the design and requirements in conjunction with the eventual customers; this ensures that the design can meet the customer requirements, allow you to ‘pivot’ if things aren’t looking good and, most importantly, work with people who could become your customers.
So for February, the plan is to contact stables in the area and ask them a series of questions designed to identify their pain points and, hopefully, confirm the assumptions and belief that are driving my solution. The questions are based on interviews Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income carried out with Dane Maxwell from The Foundation and one of his acolytes, Carl Mattiola, in these two interviews:
The suggested questions are based around the following and are intended to identify issues that software solutions can both alleviate and fix:
- what’s the most important area of your business?
- Is there any pain associated with that particular activity?
- What software have you been looking for but you just can’t find a good solution?
- What are some of the repetitive tasks that you have to do on a day to day basis?
- Who’s responsible for those tasks?
- How do you feel when you have to do those tasks
- If you could wave a magic wand related to that task, what would happen as a result?
- What are the tasks that you do that take up the most time?
- What problems are costing you the most money?
My plan is to split test by ringing 5 stables and emailing 5 stables with the latter asking the initial question – “Tell me about what you do day to day and what are the challenges that you have in your
business day to day?”
The idea is to get the dialogue going and follow up (whether phone or email) by meeting face to face to get to more of the detail. Bear in mind that the whole point of this is to validate the assumption behind the concept by confirming the pain points and, more importantly, that people will pay for a solution that saves them time and money on a monthly basis. So off we go…