New Venture Realization: Principles & Practices

In this post, I want to update our readers and subscribers on the current thinking about how new ventures move from an early idea to launch. I have been teaching topics associated with innovation for over 30 years, focusing on new product innovation. Over the years, my interests have evolved to include new venture creation … Continue reading New Venture Realization: Principles & Practices

Financial Planning for Startups: Common Errors

You are spending a good deal of research time validating various parts of your business model. Your early research includes extensive engagement with the target customer (primary research) and investigation and monitoring of your competition (secondary research). Hopefully, you have acquired some early knowledge about how important the problem's solution is to the customer and … Continue reading Financial Planning for Startups: Common Errors

Determining Sales Cycle Promotional Strategies

The last post highlighted how startups could apply the traditional marketing mix framework - Product, Price, Place, & Promotion (the four "Ps" - to develop an integrated market entry strategy. Now let's take a deeper look at the selection and testing of promotional strategy to reach and convert early target customers. As a starting point, … Continue reading Determining Sales Cycle Promotional Strategies

Market Entry Strategies for Startups

One of the most challenging goals for a startup is attracting and acquiring the proper number of customers to sustain and grow your venture. To gain adequate traction with your target customers, several aspects of your business model must align correctly, especially the customer relations and channel strategies. In an earlier post, I highlighted some … Continue reading Market Entry Strategies for Startups

Provide Customer Value Repeatedly with Well-Designed Startup Operations

Over the past three blog posts, I have been exploring the application of the business model canvas to new venture realization. The focus is on startup iterations that facilitate the formulation of early assumptions about how your enterprise will provide value to the customer. To date, we have reviewed four BMC elements, Customer Segments, Value … Continue reading Provide Customer Value Repeatedly with Well-Designed Startup Operations

Consider Early Customer Engagement Strategies in Business Model Canvas

In the last post, we spent time looking at the first two BMC elements - Customer Segments and Value Proposition - as your starting point. Identifying your customer's needs, pain points, and desired outcomes are essential first steps to developing a successful venture. The alignment of these two elements establishes the focal point of the … Continue reading Consider Early Customer Engagement Strategies in Business Model Canvas

Business Model Canvas: Where to Start?

In the last post, I made the case that a startup has many good reasons to develop a formal business model early in the process. The reasons are plentiful, but a core reason is that it provides a way for the founder to investigate and, hopefully, validate the assumptions on how the enterprise repeatedly offers … Continue reading Business Model Canvas: Where to Start?

Is the Business Model Canvas still relevant for Start Ups?

At Columbia Business School, many of us have adopted Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur's Business Model Canvas (BMC) as a template to guide students through the business model development process. Over the past few years, as we teach and discuss how best to apply the BMC to numerous new venture ideas, we have developed tools and approaches … Continue reading Is the Business Model Canvas still relevant for Start Ups?

Is it Time for a Tech Co-Founder?

A few weeks ago, the director of the Columbia Business School's Lang Center for Entrepreneurship mentioned to me that the most asked question by our MBA students is the following: When is the right time to bring on a tech co-founder? So let me outline a few considerations as a response to this question. As … Continue reading Is it Time for a Tech Co-Founder?

Early Solution Design and Testing (Part Two)

In the last post, I explained some initial thoughts on designing and testing early solutions with your target customer. As mentioned, I see the initial solution design as a continuation of early customer engagement. Once you have conducted enough customer interviews to define the problem and consider potential solutions confidently, you can begin early-stage product … Continue reading Early Solution Design and Testing (Part Two)