Saturday, August 25, 2012

Startups for Dummies

The problem with Steve Blank’s How to Build a Web Startup (Lean Launchpad Edition) article ...

There’s little to no focus on the actual product being built.

Only 1 out of 50 points listed is actually about building a product: Its listed under step 7, which is: “Add the backend code to make the site work”.

The rest is mostly cruft and admin type work that an outsourced worker could do. No doubt its important, but 98% compared to 2%?

The article comes across as a guide to building an over-hyped marketing vehicle, solely to receive funding, rather than actually building something useful that people want to use. There’s no mention of innovation or of making people’s lives easier. This is Startups For Dummies.

Full respect to Steve Blank (a 34 year veteran of Silicon Valley) and his views, but in my view, this particular article has a glaring weakness.

Some further reading on the topic:

This Starting a Startup article by Paul Graham is simple but contains three great points he says you should focus on:
  • People/a good team
  • A product that customers want
  • Low overheads

This 12 Ways To Make Your Web Startup Investable article by StartupSmart, recommends:
  • People/a good team
  • A clear market gap (i.e. a product that customers want)
  • Timing is everything

Incidentally, Steve Blank has just announced he is giving a free online course over at Udacity - Entrepreneurship: The Lean Lanchpad (EP245). It starts on 14 September, 2012.

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