Friday, February 12, 2010
Who's at the tip of your spear?
Who are the customers you go to every time with new product ideas, to see how they react?
What is the market at the very core of what you do - what you sell, what you provide, what you enable?
Who are the people, companies or groups who first saw your product or service, and immediately understood what it was for? Immediately understood how to use it, and how to benefit from it, with little to no explanation, training or discussion needed?
Those customers are at the tip of your spear. They represent your primary entry into the market.
When you're just getting started, that's who you focus on. It's who you build for, count on for feedback, good and bad, and who have the passion and endurance to stick by you as you improve, iterate and mature.
And no matter how big you get, no matter how much you expand to new markets, new products, new extensions - you can't lose focus on these early adopters. Their guidance and support will lead you longer and higher than you may think.
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