Welcome back to Day 2 of the 5-Day Master Class on streamlining your life with automatic workflows.
Today, we’re going to talk about getting your ideas noticed quickly and easily at close to zero cost.
If anyone has read the more recent books on startup philosophy — for instance, Lean Startup — you know that having an M.V.P. (Minimum Viable Product) is important.
One of the biggest mistakes I see beginners make is thinking that they’ll have to spend thousands of dollars building an idea up before they’re ready to launch it. Then, of course, they just hope that people buy into it.
WRONG, WRONG, DOUBLE WRONG.
What happens when you don’t test the market first…
Case in point:
One of my closest friends is building an educational product to help students apply to (and get accepted by) the best colleges. He’s no longer a 20-something, and he has some money to throw around — but I think he’s already spent close to $50,000+ developing the product before he’s gotten a single sale.
I support him and I think the product is going to do well…but…
THIS TERRIFIES ME.
The core component of being able to launch quickly and literally GUARANTEE your success is to TEST YOUR IDEAS FIRST.
When you’re deep into the intricacies of your product or service, sometimes you can’t see the glaring problems with them. That’s why you always, always, ALWAYS want customer feedback (or ideally, even some sales) before you push the big red button and decide to pour time and money into a project.
But the process of getting customer feedback doesn’t have to be some complicated, involved process. It can be as simple as saying, “Does this idea interest you?”
That’s where landing pages come in.
Why Landing Pages Work
The concept of a landing page is simple: Present an idea to people, collect their information (name, email, mobile, etc).
But the implications of even a few people opting in to your landing page can be huge.
When people read your idea, then follow through by giving you their information, you’ll know instantly whether or not the idea has merit, whether it’s something that the market wants, and if you should spend your time/money on it.
The even bigger benefit is that if you DO decide to launch the product or service to people in the future, you’ll already have a built-in customer list.
About a year ago, I wanted to build a new company that produced nootropic coffee. Smart drugs + coffee? Come on. Seemed like an amazing idea.
So I set up this landing page to see if people were interested:
After doing a little light promotion (posting it on Facebook, asking friends to share, etc), I got about 100 submissions. In a week.
That’s 100 people who wanted to know more about this product. The page took me about 10 minutes to construct, but I leveraged that short time frame to learn many things that could have taken me MONTHS to learn if I decided to save up, find coffee supplier, find a laboratory and THEN start making coffee.
I found out:
- I had a core audience interested in what I had to offer
- My positioning (the way I talked about the product) resonated fairly well
- People were willing to give me their personal information in exchange for the offer
I didn’t end up building the product. But I knew that there was definitely an opening. And I didn’t spend any money to learn about the market.
Why don’t you test your ideas like this?
Here’s how to get started quickly (at practically $0)
To build a landing page (no coding experience required)
I like to build my free landing pages on LaunchRock.
UPDATE: I use Leadpages ALL the time now. Love them. Bryan at Videofruit put together a great (free) way to get good at using the software quickly.
To make a quick logo
Fiverr has some great designers who will give you a logo for $5-$10 (my KeenBean logo was $5).
Pro tip: use the 99Designs “Ready Made” store for inspiration, then show some of the colors and styles to the Fiverr designer to emulate. Don’t copy. Emulate. Works extremely well for quick iteration. Check out my friend Anthony’s logo for the health/energy drink he’s working on. Really cool.
What ideas are you working on now that you could develop a quick landing page to test?
Let me know in the comments.