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I rightly believe that digital entrepreneurship is the future of Pakistan. To launch a startup was never so easy. In Pakistan, every year almost 300 digital startups are launched but the rate of sustainability is dreadfully low, only 5 start-ups out of these 300 startups sustain others are failed and shut down in the span of just a year.

The fundament reason behind this is lack of proper road map to launch and execute the idea of a startup. It has been observed that most of the entrepreneurs make some risky experiments with their startups and burn their fortune within a few months.

It is very grieving to see such a big number of digital entrepreneurs failing because of lack of apt guidance and availability of pertinent road map.

The other day I was reading a book “ The Lean Startup by Eric Ries” I found this book very helpful for start-ups. I strongly recommend this book for entrepreneurs to read this book and apply the strategy proposed by Eric Ries

This book contains a proper road map for launching a successful digital startup. I have prepared a short summary of the book; I hope it will help you to make your business a success story.

Most of the entrepreneurs and startups face a lot of challenges, as they don’t have a clear roadmap for success. So they waste a lot of time and efforts.

Unfortunately, Most of them don’t have so they rely on their intuition; expert advice or focused group survey to know whether the path they are following is right or wrong. According to Eric Ries, this is not the right approach for entrepreneurs.

Eric Ries was working as a Chief Technology Officer of a startup IMVU in 2004 at Silicon Valley. Mr Ries and his team worked for six months to build a product nobody wanted. Eric Ries discovered that building a preliminary product and presenting to target customers to measure the behaviour could save his efforts. Eric called it the Lean start Up Method.

Here are the five steps in the Lean Startup Strategy

1.Create a vision

Write a detailed vision of your startup. What value you will be delivering to your customers through your product or services. Which important problems you are going to solve. Is that problem really worth solving what will be the user experience for the first time? Write about the brand position of your product in the mind of the customers

2. What are Critical Assumptions?

 At the second stage, you need to identify the critical value assumptions about your product or services that you are going to launch. What are the serious expectations about my product if not met will cause a significant amount of wastage of time and efforts? We need to identify critical assumptions and test them with the real customers before inversing much time and money on the products or services.

It is very easy to fail to identify the critical assumptions and testing them as in reality what seems very valuable to you may be useless for the customers. You may find something very simple, may be very complex and complicated for the customers. We don’t need to establish our business on assumptions that is the biggest cause of failure of an entrepreneur.

For example

Mr Neil Patel an American Entrepreneur and marketer once get an investment of 1 Million dollars for a launching product that will solve the social media problems of users at one place, he assumed a big success but that appeared to be the biggest failure of Neil Patel.

3.Build Minimum-Viable Products (MVPs)

Eric Ries suggests us Minimum Viable product Strategy to minimize the risk of failure. You should develop a Minimum viable product (MVP) and test it with the real customers before making a big amount of investment of your time and money.

An MVP (minimum viable product) is the lean version of the product that is still functional and valuable to the customers.

4.Release MVP & Measure Behavior

Release your MVP to a small group of potential customers and take feedback.This is a very critical and intimidating stage and most of the entrepreneurs don’t muster up the courage to launch the MVP to avoid the embarrassment. But remember this embarrassment is very essential to make your product irresistible for the customers. It will reduce the risk of making a bigger loss.

5. Pivot OR PersevereIf you get an awesome response for your MVP, you should persevere and keep on working on your product and if you don’t get the expected good response, make some necessary tweaking in the product. You can check it by changing the customers or changing the product. Sometimes your product is good but you are targeting the wrong customers.

Conclusion

The lean startup is an awesome strategy for startups. It suggests three stages for making your business a success i.e. Build – measure- learn. The startup will increase the ratio of sustainability by applying this five-step strategy step by step. I strongly recommend all the entrepreneurs and digital entrepreneurs, in particular, to read this book and launch your digital start-up keeping in view the strategy given by Eric Ries in the book The Lean Startup. It is a priceless gift for entrepreneurs.

I hope you liked the book and will find the strategy very useful for your business

Have a successful startup

Iftikhar Anjum

CEO Digital-24, Co-Founder, Institute of Digital Entrepreneurship

cell:03444102025, email: hello@iftikharanjum.com