Continuing from push or pull, you need to know which camp your idea belongs to.

Do you create gain ?

Do you eliminate pain ?

The popular sentiment is that pain relievers are better than Vitamins. I have my personal disagreement with that view, but I shall not place that here. I shall reserve it for a later stage.

A fine compilation of the Gain Creator Trigger Questions can be found here

A fine compilation of the Pain Reliever Trigger Questions can be found here

Both of this comes from the fine people who created the business model canvas and value proposition design. You can read more about the work they do here

Am I getting too ahead of myself ?

If you have noticed, I could be getting too ahead of myself.

I have been deliberately missing one person till now and that is the person who shall make or break you.

Who is that ?


Begin here.

Who is the Customer ?

I may be stating the obvious, but you would be surprised that this simple question does not evoke an objective response and that sometimes can be a sure sign of trouble.

A simple rider to the above question and at times can knock off the best of people

Who is your paying Customer ?

Now, repeat this at least one hundred times everyday.

Who is my paying Customer ?

At times, I do hear this argument that we will have a user base of X million and there would be  Y ways to monetize on that X million. Somehow I do not find that a digestible argument. I am not saying it is a wrong model, but somehow if we are not able to quantify the model of monetization, then I am afraid that we are on a sticky wicket.

By the above logic who is facebook’s customer ?

What is the size of whatsapp customer base ?

What was whatsapp revenue when facebook bought it for a whooping $19 billion ?

What is the difference between an user and a customer ?

I think you should kind of ponder over this, but I would like to keep this argument simple.

Anyone who pays you money for your idea is your customer.

The customer sees value in your idea.

I think we have covered some ground here.

You have a why .

You have an Idea and the forms that the idea can be represented in (pull, push, gain, pain).

You have a reasonable view on who the customer is or rather who the paying customer is.

To follow a textbook approach and also to get some clarity in your mind, now is possibly the time to craft your elevator pitch.

Elevator pitch means you should be able to explain , convince or sell your idea in under ten twenty seconds to anyone who matters. Otherwise, you are gone in sixty seconds!  This is seemingly difficult but has its merits. It helps you to breakdown your complex abstract thought process into simple English that could be understood by anyone.

Let me dissect our own Amuz’s Elevator Pitch

For Passengers (Whom)

who want to get entertained/educated on the move, (Why)

Amuz (Idea)

is a in vehicle entertainment and education system, (What)

that allows Passengers to watch movies, listen to audio, video using their mobile connecting to the wireless hotspot within the specific transport(Bus/Train/Corporate Coaches) . (How)

Unlike where passengers consume content only on their phone or Internet (Status Quo)

Amuz allows to consume relevant content that is hosted within the transport system without having the need to connect to Internet (How is it different)

The Bracketed items in Read tell the complete story.

  • Passengers – Customers
  • Entertained/Educated – Gain/Pain (What do you think ?)
  • Amuz – Name of the idea?
  • Passengers to watch movies – What does it do and how ?
  • Current State – Status Quo
  • New State – How is it different ?

As you notice, the elevator pitch does not answer many questions but probably paves the path for many more questions and possibly should leave the listener with a  little bit more curiosity.

An elevator pitch can be deemed successful if it manages to achieve that.

I am not sure if you would call Amuz has an successful elevator pitch, but I think you would now get the ingredients of an elevator pitch.

I would like you to craft some elevator pitches in the template given above and let me know if it was a easy or difficult process.

Congratulations. Now you are armed with something.

Is this sufficient enough to assume that your idea will be a great success.

Absolutely no.

The most crucial and important phase begins now.

You have just seen one side of the coin now.

All you have is a hypothesis. Nothing more.

How will you validate that hypothesis ?

As Steve Blank, famously says

Get out of the building.

Next couple of weeks, we shall see about this in detail.

Till then, keep having fun with your creation.

Have fun. (Enjoy Maadi).