Business is about validation.


“Too many people are playing business.”

— Noah Kagan

I’ve seen this so much. I’ve been this person on more than one occasion. ¬†Noah Kagan @noahkagan calls them wantrepreneurs. What does that mean? We want the idea of starting a successful business, but never really try to get to the point: making money. Get that idea, and immediately get a customer to give you money. Get a few. And once you reach the point where managing your customers via email, calls, Facebook messages, text, whatever, then it’s time to start to think about getting a domain or building a website.

When I was in Japan I discovered Skora running shoes¬†online and ordered a pair. They’re awesome! I love running and they are the best running shoes I’ve ever worn, you can literally feel the road every time you put your foot down. But I couldn’t get them in Japan. Skora is a small Portland, OR based company that doesn’t have a wide distribution yet. No stores had them, and I couldn’t get them at any local online retailers. So I had to order them from the US and pay something like $50 shipping to get them over to me. Running is popular in Japan and people spend a lot of money on shoes so I had an idea to bring Skora to Japan and set up an online retailer. Cool. What did I do first? I got the domain name and started building the website. Then I spent some time on design and some money to hire translators for my site copy, then server fees, then … I hadn’t even found out if anyone in Japan would want these shoes! I liked them, but would anyone else!? After sinking a bit of money and time kicking at the website, I hadn’t even contacted Skora to get any shoes. I had no product and no customers. The project was dead in the water before it even began. Why? I had no validation.

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