Personal Ad: Great Technology Seeks Sexy Problem to Solve

You would not believe how many times I have met brilliant entrepreneurs with amazing, cutting-edge technologies who are clueless about their markets and about who will actually be willing to pay money for their inventions. I talked with a guy who works at a local patent office recently. He said that they get 10 such calls every week of the year.

Here is a 1-Minute Reality Checklist for technology entrepreneurs:

  1. Does your business idea soothe someone’s pain, discomfort, frustration, or dissatisfaction?
  2. Are there lots of those people out there?
  3. Do these people (or companies, or governments) have money to pay for it?
  4. Will they be able to decide quickly to buy your product or service?
  5. Does your idea exploit something about you that is outstanding or unique?

If the answer to any of these questions is “NO”, then you need to do some soul-searching work on your business plan.

The best companies are not built on new technology. They are built on solving real-life problems. Pushing new technology is like pushing on a rope. It just doesn’t work. Start with a clearly defined problem. Start with a clearly defined group of people who all experience this problem. Let these people and their common problem pull your technology into the market. This strategy is much easier and long-term. If another technology comes along and eclipses yours, then just adopt it and continue solving the problem for your customers.

If you start with the technology first, then expect a long and difficult climb up the mountain of success. If you start with the problem first, then it will be like bobsledding.  You can choose.

This list was borrowed from Daniel Isenberg, who is a professor of entrepreneurship and Harvard PhD. Here is the link.

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Rick Salmon is an energetic entrepreneur who lives in Norway and believes that European startup companies can succeed and grow quickly if only they get the proper help and assistance. Subscribe to this newsletter/blog to receive frequent updates and tips.

One Reply to “Personal Ad: Great Technology Seeks Sexy Problem to Solve”

  1. There are few things more important than offering up interesting content. I really appreciated reading this and look forward to revisiting.

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