3rd Week: Learning from our Customer Hypothesis

Third week of our journey, stamina is still up due to surprises and learning experiences. We continue working on our customer hypothesis, as soon as we get to what is called: A Day in Customer life, we get stuck. First, we created the hypothesis based in our own experiences as grocery shoppers and the problems we face. What turn around was unexpected. When we started this project we had a problem and a solution to it. However, while brainstorming our hypothesis, we realized that our idea of a problem may not be the same for our future users.

Now our goal is to find out what are the real problems that our potential users have. We want to be able to understand how it is a day in our customers’ lives .

We are recruiting possible users that could help us validate our hypothesis (If interested please contact us at bigpoket2009@gmail.com). We want to prove our hypothesis with real customer data, and put aside internet surveys or other kind of metrics as recommended. Even though it has been hard to find people to interview, we believe that there are early evangelists out there that will be willing to help us. Now our job is to focus on finding them.

From a real startup
Your hypothesis is based on opinions, yours and your co-founders’ . You want to turn that into facts. And it seems that facts are not enough. You need to dive deeper.

We are trying to solve a “problem” that all of us experience when deciding, executing and living grocery shopping. We interviewed a couple of people this weekend, as not being experts on this model we are learning and executing at the same time. Here are some tips when interviewing:

1.- Ask open questions
2.- Do not try to complete answers
3.- Do not influence answers
4.- Never talk about features
5.- Accept all the information the interview provide, new question will be discover
6.- Set your mind in discovery mode
7.- Turn your interview into a conversation
8.- Have a list of topics you want to touch but be open to changes

Some findings:

One of our fist question was: How often do you do your grocery shopping? When we created this question we were looking for a number. Based on some statistics, we found that people do their grocieries twice a month. We wanted to check if this was right. When we asked this question it turns out that they shop at different supermarkets for different products, and the time range changes. They will normaly go the the supermarket once a week, but mostly to buy perishable products. However, They will buy more of their cleaning and canned food at a membership warehouse club located on a city close to their hometown. Even tough it takes them one and a halfh hour to get there. They do not see it as a problem.

As you can see, asking the right question will lead you to unexpected places, which is good because you want to get there.

While discovering

We believe that if we build a stronger internet presence, it will be easier to find future users to help us. To do that we have two goals for next week.
These goals are: create our website and record a video pitch to show who we are, and what we are trying to do. For our website our first idea was to use bigpocket.com as our domain, but this domain was already taken. Although it is not being used, we have not been able to contact the owner. We did not worry about checking the domain before deciding our name, big mistake, at least it is early to make a move.
This is definitely a lesson to learn for future projects. Even though it is not a big deal, it was definitely something unexpected. However, we will not let it slow us down. We are already thinking about other creative domain for our website, and we will let you know as soon as it and our video are ready.

While recording our pitch video.

We tried to record ourselves giving our bigpocket pitch, but we found kind of lost. Is this really a problem our target market has? Good question, then we decided to go back to customer discovery.

Bloopers to be posted later, you will laugh about us 🙂

Now, it is time for all of us to get out of our offices and start meeting more potential users. We need about 50, help us ModernMom, Blogher. Some of our team members already interviewed some people, and we all are very excited to see what other grocery shoppers have to say. We want to learn what we do not know about them, and start building our start up from there. A different one from what we though, maybe.

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~ by bigpocket on January 18, 2010.

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