Idea To MVP To First Customer In Less Than 30 Days: How We Did It

Samu
Samu
Feb 21, 2016 · 5 min read

“You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”

— Rocky Balboa

I’ve started a couple of startups in the past and I probably did everything wrong someone could. But I’ve learned so much from my failures and also from a great community that supported me from day one. People that I haven’t met before. Startups that I haven’t heard of before. They all answered my questions patiently, connected me with the right people and did everything to help me succeed without wanting something in return.

How I came up with the idea

Finding an idea for a startup is never easy, but I would give you the following advice: try solving a problem that you experience yourself and haven’t found any solution for it yet.

“What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.”

When I was thinking on how to solve this problem for me, it struck me. I’ve remembered something I’ve learned back at school: the Eisenhower matrix, a time management technique used by presidents, business leaders and celebrities. I immediately loved the idea. It is simple, it’s in a niche with little competition and it’s widely used across people all over the world.

Validating my assumptions

I’ve spent around one and half years building another startup, and it ultimately failed. I did a lot of mistakes, but assuming to know what people wanted was probably the biggest one. We built an amazing piece of technology, but people just had no need for it.

“Samu is a way to bring mindfulness into everyday life as well as to get things done.” — Wikipedia

Inspired by Joel’s approach I’ve called the product Samu as I liked its meaning and used samuapp.com as the domain. I needed a homepage explaining the product and a pricing page explaining the subscription plans. If a user tried to sign up, I’ve displayed a dialog asking for his email address.

Finding a co-founder

I quickly realized that my coding skills are not enough to build this product. I’ve built a basic prototype, but it wasn’t something that you could sell. And I know that a lot of people say that you should be ashamed of your first version, but I don’t think this is entirely true in 2016. People are used to beautiful designs these days and there’s way more competition than 10 or even 5 years ago.

Two pizzas is just right for two people :-)

Building a MVP & first paying customer

One of the core principles of the Lean Startup method is to work smarter, not harder. So instead of spending months on building a product packed with features, we opted to build a minimum viable product that can be released in less than 30 days.


Samu’s Startup Journey

We share transparently the journey of our startup, what worked for us and what did not.

Samu

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Samu

Samu is the easiest way to manage your tasks. It’s based on a time management technique used by presidents, business leaders and celebrities -> www.samuapp.com

Samu’s Startup Journey

We share transparently the journey of our startup, what worked for us and what did not.