So i joined a new firm for internship, my life is starting to roll out finally. Its a tough decision to select where to intern or start a job when you have a lot of aspirations and expectations about how you wanna work, the environment, creativity and your level of engagement. Me being lucky got a chance to work with a startup company in music industry. First of all a startup and that too in music industry, a jackpot for me.
So now that I’m working closely with the founder, giving in my ideas, my enthusiasm level always remain on the top. I’m always up to something new and I just want to turn the face of the company and be a key player in doing that, even before they have launched the product. That’s how i think. Being in the marketing, business and customer development i keep reading online about finding the best ways to kick off our product’s launch, how to market it efficiently, ways to build up customer trust etc and even though these articles, blogs and websites give you plenty of information there is always a hunger in me to try it out practically.
One day while having a casual chat with the founder I started telling him about my ideas for marketing before the launch. He listened to me patiently and then started explaining me his point of view. He was of the opinion of Not to start marketing the product intensively unless we are certain that people in our beta launch liked it.
It’s in my nature to raise questions and arguments about the logic that doesn’t match my thinking. Naturally I’m gonna raise questions here as well.
His point of view: We are a startup and we should concentrate on building the right product and try to solve the problem. When we launch it the few initial users we have should be able to enjoy the platform as well as use it for what it is made and act as testers for us. If we are able to satisfy those initial beta users, we are on the right track otherwise we need to go back to the white board and start seeing it through once again.
So if we bring too many users initially and the platform doesn’t fit the bill for them, we shall lose a huge amount of customer base which might not return to us again. In the meantime if our beta users are not happy and the retaining numbers are not high then we can improve upon the product based on feedback and user behavior. This will reduce our efforts in marketing, we will get the feedback and then after testing the waters we can finally jump into it completely.
My point of view: Though he made very precise and relevant points I was of a different opinion. I thought of marketing intensively from the start before the beta launch, probably because that’s what I’m there for and probably because I don’t agree with him completely. As I explored the product during designing stages I tried to analyze it like a common user with the same questions in mind and for the beta launch the product seemed quite adorable to me.
I felt that creating an initial buzz among the users will first of all help us getting a large amount of initial user base which of course every startup wants and secondly it will motivate us do exceedingly well beyond our limits seeing that nothing should go wrong as so many people are counting on us for our beta launch and also we shouldn’t look fool after the whole giant publicity. I also feel that getting a small user base and testing the beta product on their opinion might not give us an accurate figure however, if the user base is huge we will get diversified feedback and user behavior which can help us in designing and tweaking the product in the right way. Moreover if the product suits the bill and people start liking it, it might just do exceedingly well ahead of time then we thought.
Perspective: It’s about offence and defense. Because he is a founder he is trying to be cautious and taking up a defensive approach initially so that everything should go according to the plan and even if it didn’t we should have ample time to fix it or improve it. Me on other hand being an intern and having nothing to lose think offensively, go out to the market with all the guns in hand, start blazing slowly and then according to the response start expending your resources.
I don’t know if I’m wrong in my approach or not but I feel it’s also a case of lack of confidence for his product. If you have faith and confidence that your product seems to be the right MVP and it is solving the problem that we are here for then he shouldn’t restrict any part of business development and move forward with full enthusiasm and preparation.
Have you ever faced such a situation and apart from arguments made here, what’s your opinion about it?