We see SaaS startups like Slack, Zenefits, and HubSpot achieve massive growth, seemingly out of nowhere. We then watch as the founders reach celebrity status and cement their positions in Silicon Valley folklore. 

These Entreporn success stories have caused some entrepreneurs to prioritize growth over product validation, which often has dire results. This is illustrated in stories like this:

We scaled prematurely with the growth team because we focused our team on customer acquisition even though we still had no idea who our customers were and how much they were willing to pay. – Jun Loayza

And this:

In order to justify the product to myself, I started making problems up – there’s an extra iPad tilt, tired arms, uncomfortable grip,  etc. Joining the accelerator, we were reminded of how important talking to customers actually is. So I “cleverly” put up an online survey and started sending it out to all our subscribers, with biased questions like, “You have these problems, right?” What I should have done is actually gone out of my comfort zone and talked to them one-on-one about their lives, experiences and pains. Instead, I continued to perfectly execute the wrong plan. – Ivaylo Kalburdzhiev

The simple fact is, if you don’t provide enough value to customers, you’re going to have a difficult time even getting your first five early adopters… let alone build a sucessfull business.

With that in mind we’ve decided to take our expertise in lead generation, customer development and product development and package it into one highly valuable blog series.

Our Goal: Help 100 companies validate an assumption and get their first 5 early adopters

We’re here to show how you can validate an idea and obtain initial traction before developing your product. We want to share stories of how Nugget companies are doing it.

Our goal is to help 100 companies get 5 early adopters because at Nugget, we don’t just want to provide ideas, we want to help you build a sustainable business.

We’ll do this by sharing:

  • Strategies to help you understand who your customer is 
  • Strategies to help you develop problem hypothesis for your customers
  • Strategies to get in front of potential customers quickly
  • Advice on how to validate an idea both qualitatively and quantitatively

Since we’ve done this before (and continue to do so) we’ll be sharing:

  • The templates we use to reach out to potential customers
  • Call scripts and recordings (with interviewee permission) that we use to validate ideas
  • All of our successful, and unsuccessful validation attempts

What’s Next?

Hopefully, you’ll join us on our journey. You don’t need to be a Nugget community member to take part (though you can sign up for a free trial here).

We will be releasing a post every Wednesday that will help you go from 0 customers to 5 customers. Next Wednesday we’ll be publishing a blog post outlining exactly how we helped a startup talk to 25 customers in 2 weeks.

This will include:

  • How we identified target customers
  • The exact templates used to reach out to over 120 companies (along with success metrics)
  • The exact call script used to identify the companies pain points
  • The findings and resulting pivot

We’ve learned dozens of lessons like the ones outlined above that we’ll discuss over the coming months. Many of these will be long and detailed posts, and we strongly believe that this actionable information will help your entrepreneurial endeavors.

Be on the look out for our blog post next Wednesday. If you have any specific questions or something you’d like to learn about, please feel free to email me at brandon@nugget.one.

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Nugget is an online incubator & community. We help founders start and grow profitable side projects.