Validating your Startup Idea
Starting a new business begins with an idea that needs to evolve through experimentation, iteration, and interactions with people. Coming up with startup ideas can be hard, but validating them is even harder, and more important to your startup than you might realize. Because regardless of how world-changing your idea is, if you build a product before validating the idea it’s based on, there’s a good chance your product will fail.
Headstart Network Delhi, with its flagship initiative Startup Saturday for October 2018 edition, aimed at existing and potential entrepreneurs who are looking for guidance and support to make their ‘great idea’ a reality. In addition to reviewing the basic principles of entrepreneurship, it also guided the attendees through the process of actively validating your idea in the market.
The event was successful in encouraging everyone to identify and communicate good opportunities and to create and capture value from these opportunities.
Steps to Validate your Idea
Our very first speaker, Mr Mishu Ahluwalia, founder Gohive, Delhi NCR’s first women-friendly coworking space, focus on the different steps one needs to take to validate his/her startup idea. He explicitly mentioned the step-by-step pointers beneficial for anyone looking for validating their idea:
- State the problem.
- Write down the possible solutions.
- Create a Minimum Viable Product.
- Generate early feedbacks.
- Look out for a mentor.
- Go out and execute.
The experienced entrepreneur also emphasized the importance of networking and the way to utilize them as a critic. Also, product-market match and paying customer as some of the early signs of going in the right direction. He also talked about the significance that a customer feedback holds and the pros of acting constructively on it.
Need for Competitive Analysis and Product Market Fit
Our next speaker, Mr Amit Thakral, the advisor in the AI & Transit OOH Space, Sales & Marketing Consultant in Brand/Digital Advertising, started his articulation with the cosmic Japanese Theory IKIGAI. The theory IKIGAI, is a cross-section of the three main things, your values, things you like to do, and things you are good at.
Sharing the experience of his flourishing career with us, he was a software engineer that moved to marketing and sales with the course of years and achieved a lot in digital space as well. Learning from his experiences, he says the focal point of any entrepreneur should be 3x3x3 perspective for getting your vision, strategy, and product aligned.
It is the most important aspect of an entrepreneur’s journey to continuously evolve and pivot with the changing market needs. He emphasized the fact that ‘you are not your own customer’ and to keep the customer critic as close as possible. He came to deliver his wisdom with a noble thought of more you give, more comes back to you.
Where you are and where you want to be.
Our third speaker of the day, Mr Gaurav Kuchru, founder of 5Ideas Startup Superfuel, mentorship led seed stage fund threw light on the various stages involved in the funding series of startups. Starting from early-stage landscape, he talked about several funds and accelerators involved in the various funding stages. The corporate accelerators like Jio, T-Labs provides low or no fund and more of operational aid to the budding owners. Whereas, Angel Networks and Seed Funds like Seedfund, Yournest meet their financing needs.
He categorically mentioned the various risk involved in the stages of startup valuation and how do the investors perceive it. Starting from an idea-stage business that poses the maximum risk and usually involves self-funding to the ready-to-scale business that involves series funding from institutional investors, he could draw the bigger picture to help you locate your startup in this framework.
He emphasized the homework to be done before reaching out to the investors. With his triumphant journey with a number of startups, he mentioned the innovative startup and their 4 basic principles of value creation which are an untapped market, crashing costs, disintermediation and intermediation.
Standing out with innovative ideas
Followed by the above session, was our last but not least speaker Mr Satjeet Singh Bedi, Founder and CEO BookMyChotu.com. Sharing his entrepreneurial journey, where he made several changes to the service model he emphasizes the importance of pivoting in the startup route. Pivoting is the process of changing the direction of a company. He also talked about how his company was recognized all over the world with the help of thinking a little out of the box. He also talked about the way opportunity and pivoting worked for his venture.
With the shining and content eyes, the audience was happy to receive the different and informational content on the way they could validate their startup ideas. Also, If you think that the idea validation stage is daunting, consider these words from Thomas Edison:
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
Since our inception in 2007, we have built a grassroots level ecosystem in 23 Indian cities and organised over 1000 startup events focused on networking, mentoring, hiring and fundraising. Our work has played a role in getting over 10,000 new ventures off the ground. Some of the young startups that made their early stage demos on our platform are now unicorns. Cumulatively all these companies have created over 20Lk jobs and added over 148,000 Crores to the Indian economy. You’d be surprised to know, Headstart is almost entirely run by passionate volunteers. We have a bold vision for India, and as empowered citizens we do whatever little we can do, to further it.
Volunteer- Headstart Delhi