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⚡️Pre-validate an idea & get beta testers before creating anything
Issue 3🪜: Sell to your initial customers before building a product or landing page.
Hey everyone👋, welcome to the 8th newsletter.
Rather than wasting your time on building something straight away check if it’s really needed & has initial buys or users so you don’t have to wait for them to come to you.
Trust me, I’ve gone through this, if you’ll build it without involving your initial users, it’s very hard to push the growth and maybe your product can become redundant.
Involving people since day one:
Makes them feel exclusive.
They feel like they are contributing something valuable.
Initial users mean initial investment.
And they are most happy to be part of the incredible product you’re building that can help make their lives better.
See, if you’re writing an e-book, you worked months on it, edited, added resources, etc. but kept it secret from your buyers (because you thought they’ll buy from you once it’s out). The day comes & you launched your e-book with an expectation to sell at least 30 copies that day.
But you made 0 sell.
Your buyers weren’t expecting this.
You didn’t talk about it before to create a buzz.
You didn’t involve your potential buyers who might have become a word of mouth, helped you build a little trust that the content is something nowhere to be found, etc.
And you couldn’t get any testimonials to uplift the sale.
It would have been a lot easy if you know what to build, for whom to build & do they need it even before building anything, even a landing page.
That’s where you need to pre-validate your idea, which will help you create a buzz when beta launching + get initial users to test your product + get some real feedback to build the product in the right direction.
Define your goals 🎯
Let's first start by defining your goals. What do you want to achieve before you build the product? What do you want to know about the market & users? Any numbers you want to achieve? Here are some things you can add:
The number of beta testers you need for initial testing.
Know if there is a market for your product.
Who are your competitors & why do people love using their product? And what users don't like about their product?
Understand if you're building the solution which is needed by the users.
Lastly, get feedback on your product idea.
But before you consider anything have you thought about these:
Why & how people will actively use your product?
Getting those beta tester by reaching out to them or a small call out is easy but automating the user signups are more important. You know, if you're not able to retain users it will be hard to grow & build a successful product. Look at Clubhouse:
They had their hype but aren't able to retain users at the same level in their beta testing as before. The whole thing lasted for 3-4 months.
Create a framework on how you'll retain users. How you'll make them engaged on your app & how those people can invite more people? Because building the product is easy but keeping the users engaged with your product is hard.
If you want to have a million users, you cannot reach out personally to them. They need to come to you in a form, for which you need to have a framework. What can work the best for you: marketing, campaigns, programs, referrals, etc?
Feedback on the idea 😃
If I would have to start a new project, I want to validate the idea without spending a dime on it.
I would create a survey asking questions related to the product.
Personally ask people to fill it from my network & people I think can be my potential users, & give feedback on it.
And also, share it on Twitter (or any other community or social media platform), so it's open for everyone to test.
Next, I would analyze the data & start building the product.
Through this process, I know what to expect & whatnot.
Getting the initial feedback helps you know if the product has a market & has sufficient users who will help with the launch of the product & accelerate its growth.
Your goal should be to get feedback on the idea & see how people are already trying to solve the problem. People from whom you get the initial feedback can be the ones who test your product first. So, spend the time on it wisely.
So, through this process you have:
What users need in the initial launch,
and a list of initial users or beta testers.
Way to get initial feedback:
Create a survey form - It will help me answer all the questions I have regarding people using my product. Also, I make sure to ask them if they want to be on the beta list so that once the product is open for beta testers they can use it & give me feedback.
Remember to collect all the data you need to validate the idea but don’t make it too long for them to answer it.
Ask your community (if you already have one) - If you already have a community it’s awesome and if you're building a product for them, half of your work is already done.
Social media - Personally I use Twitter to get feedback & set connection with the users. Use whichever you feel you’ll get the most valuable response from.
Reaching out personally to users - Yes it’s something that really works amazing till now.
The faster you get your feedback, the faster you’ll be able to execute the idea. Don’t keep it boring, keep it concise & to the point where you know you don’t need any fancy data.
Get those beta testers 🚀
Your feedback will help you get those beta testers. People who showed interest in your idea, in the first place, will likely try out your product & happily spread the word about it.
So how many beta testers are you expecting?
You cannot expect to get thousands of beta testers to try the product on the first day & also cannot be satisfied by only 10 users. There needs to be a milestone, a number to track & why you want that specific amount of testers.
Most of the time you’ll keep in touch with your initial users. So if the number is small it’s easy to track & monitor the progress & feedback.
Some products will work best if you go with very few people, say 30-50 users and some with more. But do put a number on how many people you want to give early access to.
These initial testers should actually try out your product & give you feedback. Think of each one of them as billion-dollar users. The feedback you get from them will help you build the product in the right direction, know if it's needed in the market & how you're going to expand it.
Before you go🚪
Before I end this newsletter why not you guys give me feedback on my idea 😅. Here’s the feedback corner & it won’t take you more than a few minutes to answer it 👉🏻 Check it here!
“Build-Measure-Learn feedback loop is at the core of the Lean Startup model.”
― Eric Ries, The Lean Startup. Read this book.
Here’s how Zoe Chew validate a startup idea in 2 hours with $0 capital & building.
Validation can be complicated too 🤯
Until next time! 👋
👋 PS: I’m Ritika founder, product marketer and advisor for early-stage startups, find more here or connect with her here. If you’re a first-time founder looking for curated resources, download here. If you enjoyed this post, read the past issues here. You can also promote your product in this newsletter.
A big thanks for reading & sharing!