push-pull

You know the “Why”

You seem to have something of an “Idea”

What next ?

I have kind of evolved to believe that there are two schools of taking an Idea to a market.

When you are productizing, you need to figure out which camp you are in, because that is going to determine what happens when you hit some roadblocks. Some is an understatement and you shall many roadblocks.

So you can belong to the Steve Jobs, Elon Musk camp or the Steve Blank, Eric Ries camp.

Let me attempt to simplify the way idea is taken to market.

Push – You will push it down with consumer’s throat with such intensity and somehow you will be made to feel that how could you have lived without this in your life up-to now. You are a genius in understanding the consumer insights and you have the personal charisma or can create the awe surrounding your product. Apple’s iphone is the most repeated example of this.

Closer home and if you kind of go back in time, Reliance launched 500 rupees phone and that changed the dynamics of the Industry. It was pushed with some intensity and helped Reliance gain significant Market Share.

Pull – You get out a bare minimum first version , famously called as Minimum Viable Product (MVP) in the Lean approach to product development, to see if you can get traction, and iterate rapidly on the feedback that you get. This process has been institutionalized as the Lean Approach to Product Development and currently occupies the dominant mindshare towards getting something out in the market.

The story of freshdesk is a good story of this model.

There might be someone who could possibly have a combination of push and pull.

I would cover some aspects of the push model, but mostly this series will cover the pull model and the science behind it.

In my view, the art and science of contemporary practices behind pull model, gives a very rationale framework for entrepreneurship and reasonably succeeds in making a science out of it.

I shall deconstruct AMUZ in the pull model and hopefully it shall help you understand the nuances in the pull model and how you can possibly construct your idea in the pull model.

Before I start, I would like to confess one thing. I like people behind the push model. They are the folks who create the dent in the universe and the universe needs them a lot. I am reminded of the quote from George Bernard Shaw

“The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”

The Jobs, Musks, Tatas and Ambanis belong to the unreasonable category.

However there can be a life for an idea without making a dent in the universe and they need to be respected as well.

Not everything we do should or need attract mainstream attention.

Not everything needs to be an unicorn, though there is no harm in having a vision like that.

Moonshots are not a bad thing, but not everything need to be a moonshot.

There is merit and purpose in an idea like Ramraj Cotton who took a loan of Rupees 17000 and created a multi million dollar brand.

It really boils down to you deciding on which camp you belief yourself to be in and though belief can be double edged sword, you need to have that inside of yourself to kickstart your idea.

So now,

You have a “Why”

You have an “Idea”

You know your “camp”

What next ?

To borrow from the wonderful folks who created the business model canvas and value proposition design methodologies, you need to know

Are you a Gain Creator ?

Are you a Pain Eliminator ?

When I say “You” here, it mostly would mean it is your idea, product or yourself.

As an entrepreneur you cannot be separated from your product. You are the product. I am going to come back to this in a different way at a later time, but at this time please remember that you are the product .

And one final thing, when you have decided to take the leap and any time in that journey, remember this one line

“The Buck Stops Here”

In the next week, we shall see more about Gain Creation, Pain Elimination and some other fundamental aspects.

It could be that I am drifting and dragging, but when I end this , I would like to give you a usable model like I did for the “Why”, that you can use to validate your journey and to make things simple, I have to set the necessary context.

Luckily when I was struggling for words, the daily blog from Seth Godin articulated it better and I have mercilessly pasted it below. The original link is here

“You have two choices when you want to move forward (grow a business, sell an idea, get a ‘yes’):

  1. Have such an insight and deliver such innovation that people will choose to make a new decision, adopt a new habit or otherwise get smarter.
  2. Provide an option that matches a decision they’ve already made. No new decisions, merely new information.

Ms. Investor, you already invested in companies A, B, and C. We match that pattern.

Movie executive, you made a lot of money on three comedies for the young adult audience. We match that pattern.

Hey kid, you love to buy new flavors of chocolate bars, here’s a new flavor.

You’re used to taking pharmaceuticals, and this placebo looks just like one. 

Most of the time, we look for patterns that match our habits. When we find a pattern match, we can embrace it without re-evaluating our beliefs.

On the other hand, moving all your data to the cloud, or staying at an Airbnb, these are new decisions, new ways of being in the world. Trying to get a book publisher to fund your magazine or your web app might make sense to you, but without the benefit of a pattern to match, the publisher who has built a career around one pattern might get cold feet.

Human beings are pattern-matching machines. Changing our beliefs, though, is something we rarely do. It’s far easier to sell someone on a new kind of fruit than it is to get them to eat crickets, regardless of the data you bring to the table.

It’s tempting (and important) to improve the world by creating new beliefs. But it’s far more reliable to match them.”

It is possibly worth while to start with pattern matching rather than creating new beliefs.

Enjoy Maadi (Have Fun)

Zunder