Focusing all my attention on sales is paying off. We are starting to see a true “product-market fit”. We now have three worthy pilot partners wanting to work with us. These new partners are charities, not businesses. The problems that charities want solved are different than those of businesses. The app we built during the pandemic lock-down solved the business problems of our first pilot partner. This means we need to invest more time and money into building something new.
Believe me, I’m itching to get started working on wireframes. Building stuff is what I love to do most of all. It is very tempting to say, “One partner proves there are hundreds more. Let’s build it fast before someone else does!” But I will never make the same mistake I made with our last partner.
We need to find more partners like the ones who said yes to reduce the risk of building the wrong product. Or, worse yet, something no one wants. We need to justify the investments we will need to make to update our current app. We also need to confirm that this can one day become a sustainable business.
I will continue to focus on speaking with charity partners. Learn more about who they are and what they want. We need to be more certain it’s worth investing more time and money in launching a pilot.
After months of building a team and web app, it became clear that Gvbck was losing its pilot partner. Because of the nature of the product, it would be impossible to launch without one. It was a frustrating setback, but it taught me a valuable lesson; never launch a product with one partner.
If the partner goes away, you’re dead
If that one partner goes away, as in our case, you don’t have another one to fall back on. The product is dead if you can’t find another partner fast. You will find yourself recalibrating all your focus from building to selling overnight. Without a partner, you don’t need a product. With a new partner, you might need a different product. All that work could go to waste. Which brings me to the second reason you never launch a product with only one partner.
One partner makes you an agency
A pilot partner gives you an opportunity to learn what problems your product solves. If you only have one partner, you only know what problems that one partner has. With one partner you are acting as a volunteer agency. How do you know if other people have the same problem? With more partners, you learn which problems are important to more people.
Fool me twice, shame on me
Luckily, we found another launch partner pretty fast. It’s tempting to get back to work on finishing the product for launch, but I’ve made the executive decision we must have 3 partners before we start building. Three partners who want us to solve a specific problem. Two partners down, one more to go.
One is None. Two is One. Three is the beginning of a company. Looking forward to announcing who our three partners are soon.