MVP Development · Product Launch Strategy

Recommend strategy for how to launch step zero MVP for a teach-heavy platform?

Hossein R.

September 8th, 2020

There are many avenues to finance a startup and to build an MVP within those constraints, so, I'm curious about a special case:I have some autodidact technical background, and the platform which is at the heart of our MVP is quite a heavy platform [by which I mean something far more than Instagram or Pinterest] and even providing access to it via web-interface or a separate native app is going to be an added challenge.As someone without any active network in Silicon Valley or elsewhere where startups are appreciated, how would go around getting the MVP developed?The ideas on top of my mind about how to go about this are:

  • Forking an existing open source technology? [downside: easy to duplicate or be eaten up by the startup community]
  • Financing the MVP by investors? or giving away shares to early stages developers who agree with no salary?
  • Reducing the product to an even crappier stage and developing it oneself? [even if it would take an additional year or so?]
  • Attracting open-source contributors? [but from my knowledge most coders only contributors to projects that are already out there and not to something from scratch!]

So, the context of the advice I'm seeking is regarding a real-life scenario where almost everything that can go wrong will go wrong with some more additional things going wrong, and one needs to maintain a main activity and pursue the start-up as a side-hustle and etc, and etc.I would appreciate it if you could link/brief the stories of founders starting from similar points, etc.

Paul Garcia marketing exec & business advisor

September 9th, 2020

The problem is that you're starting with the idea you need to build an MVP. Never start with development. Always start with marketing strategy and validation. The exercise of validating your marketing strategy should inform your development decisions. First it will reveal whether your product has the ability to become a business. It will also identify for whom you are building it, where you will find them, what they're willing to pay, under which conditions, and what you'll need to do to sell the product to them. Most importantly it will tell you exactly what your product must do. With all that information, you can then make a decision whether building it is economically feasible considering what it will take in labor, advertising, and what how many people are willing to pay.

Don't start backwards with the product, expecting you need it in hand to try selling it. You don't.