Identify the right customer — don’t run for just everyone

When in a (any) business sooner or later you’ll start-up selling something to someone (I’m noting this as many tech startups tend to ˝burn˝ cash from some series xy funding). And that means marketing. If you are a neewbie— as was I — you think you have the best product the world will see and that every user or business will jump in — em… Maybe you’ve got the best product but ˝jumping˝ part is probably not going to happen, sorry to disappoint you.

So at start don’t try to market your product to the masses, pick the right customer for your product/service—early adopter

An early adopter or lighthouse customer is an early customer of a given company, product, or technology; Typically this will be a customer who, in addition to using the vendor’s product or technology, will also provide considerable and candid feedback to help the vendor refine its future product releases, as well as the associated means of distribution, service, and support.

Wikipedia article

You should form a group of early adopters and market to them. People outside this group should think you’re crazy, or at the very least, ignore you.

Ask this questions when defining the (early adopter) customer—and be rally clear about the answers:

  • What does he already believe?
  • What is he afraid of?
  • What does he think he wants?
  • What does he actually want?
  • What stories have resonated with him in the past?
  • Who does he follow and emulate and look up to?
  • What is his relationship with money?
  • What channel has his permission?
  • Where do messages that resonate with him come from?
  • Who does he trust and who does he pay attention to?
  • What is the source of his urgency—why will he change now rather than later?
  • After he has changed, what will he tell his friends?

Play smart and don’t burn your energy and resources on something that doesn’t work. You’ll end up with few unhappy customers instead of bunch of happy ones!