In my next few posts, I'm going to go through a few of the mistakes that I made while building CoffeePass. Hopefully you can learn from me and steer clear of some of the traps that I fell into!
This happened a few times to me. When you have a new business idea, you are really motivated to sell your business and get your first customers. The big problem is that you might take customers at any cost.
This is a mistake! There are so many people out there that just can’t say no and will instead just say “maybe,” thus basically keeping you hanging onto a thread of hope that they will eventually take you up on your offer. They like to keep their options open. The problem is - they hardly will follow through, thus wasting a lot of your time in the process.
People generally have a fear of missing out. What if you are building the next big thing in their industry?! They want to be able to jump back on the bandwagon if your idea gains traction. At the same time, they aren’t truly committed in the first place.
I had a coffee shop that wasn’t that interested in CoffeePass, but since I just kept selling to them and convincing them, they eventually said, “Ok, we can try it out in a few months.” I had them on board…..right???!
Well….not really. You know what I did? I waited a few months and then reached out to them again. They still weren’t ready. Then again… and again… and again. I probably met in person with this shop 3 times trying to get them on the platform because there seemed to be a glimmer of hope!
However, there was no commitment on their end. I was trying to make it as easy as possible for them to jump on board. I set up their tablet, fully created their menu on the app, and basically did all of the work for them. I thought I was helping, but really, I was just enabling them and making it really easy for an uncommitted shop to say “yes.” Since I got them all set up, I put them on the platform. They NEVER ended up using it at all!
Beware of uncommitted users because they can just be a huge waste of your time. And even worse, they could potentially even lead you astray! If the shop had said that they needed feature “x”, I might have went out and built that. I would have built something for someone who didn’t really even want my product, simply because I was so desperate for users.
I should have taken the hint that the particular coffee shop I was selling to didn’t want CoffeePass. Instead, I soldiered on and tried to keep pushing and MAKE them want it.
Get users early on that actually want the product that you’re building. You shouldn’t be trying to force it down their throat. And, if it feels like you’re having to force it on everyone, then maybe you should go back to the drawing board.
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