As we have discussed previously, you have an idea, and want to build a prototype to test the idea in the marketplace. How do you get started?
The first step involves clearly defining the problem you are attempting to solve. Who benefits from this problem being solved? Will they spend money to solve it? How much will they spend? You need to get as clear as possible with these answers, because this will define your budget, and what you can accomplish for that amount of money.
Once the problem is clarified and defined precisely, you'll need to spend time thinking about the minimum features required to effectively solve the problem for your first customers. Keep it simple and focus only on the most important, core capabilities. This is much easier said than done!
At this point you're ready to start designing the basic look and feel of your product, and create an initial data model. If you have experience in software development, this is the beginning of the fun part. Start building!
However, if you're a non-technical founder, you'll need software development help. Choosing the right partner is extremely important. You'll want someone with experience in the high-tech startup space, preferably building other products. There are so many options available that this topic deserves its own post. However, for the sake of argument, we'll assume you've chosen 6B Partners LLC as your development partner ;)
We'll start with the UI design process, construction of the data model, and many questions that really drive out the details of what you're attempting to solve for. Feature requests will pile up very quickly. The trick is to only choose the features absolutely needed to solve the problem - anything else will add cost, time, and complexity that you cannot afford.
Once your development team starts building Version Zero, you're officially on the path to an MVP launch into the marketplace. Now's the time to build a little buzz on social media, while keeping close watch on the progress of the build. Make sure you're available to answer developer questions, which will come up often during this process.
Version Zero is a huge accomplishment, to be sure. But it's just the beginning of the product development journey. The marketplace will guide your next iteration. You'll have to understand what is working, what isn't, and quickly pivot the development team around this information.
We highly recommend you find a technical expert to guide you through this process. 6B Partners LLC specializes in providing technology strategy and guidance on a fractional (contract) basis. We can also assist with the development execution work, through our network of trusted vendors.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to tell us more about your world-changing idea! We look forward to enabling your vision!