There’s a common misconception that success is born from an undying passion for what you’re building, plus a hefty dose of grit and determination. Passion is a powerful motivator. But if you don’t have a superior solution to a common problem, you don’t have a viable business idea.
… we currently have access to, we tend to forget that we’re selling to humans instead of robots. And even though AI’s gone pretty far, the main difference between robots and humans is that humans still make emotionally-charged decisions.
A typical venture-backed startup will raise money to buy Facebook ads to fuel growth. Boston Dynamics, and these three other startups make cool stuff, pitch it to media outlets, and use the resultant free attention to fuel (more modest) growth.
With so many venture-backed startups being funded and growing quickly, we’ve lost the vocabulary to appreciate viable, but low-velocity tech startups. Without funding rounds to tally, or unicorn thresholds to cross, discussing the importance or even validity of a startup can be hard for many in the tech community.
Rao’s point, I think, is not that connecting to individuals is a waste of time, but that those connections are most effective in the context of a story whereby a purchase grants membership in a desirable club. In this sense, the ultimate value of Drift’s “show” is in creating a club that its target buyers want to join.