Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Balance Product Development with Communication

Many startups work too much on a product but spend little time communicating about their product/services; there are other start-ups which do the other extreme - over communicate but spend little time on product development. As mentioned earlier, working out the communications to synchronize with what you intend to deliver through your product is quintessential.  It is crucial to find a balance in this activity of really doing the work - and talk about the work. 

In addition to the hard work put on the product the entrepreneur could at a minimum need to have the following as part of his communication activities:
  1. Elevator Pitch - short pitch that covers what the business does and addresses. Ensure it is catching the attention of the listener! Yes, it takes time to perfect this and its only by practice that this gets better.
  2. Short Business Summary - I would prefer a super short summary in a hard copy format - say around A5 size or even the hind of your visiting card that helps communicate what you do really precisely sharply. There are like like hook to the communication exchange done - people could look at this and find use at a later date.
  3. Business Presentation - this is an ever-evolving document. The more time you spend understanding your audience and the more presentations you make - this one only gets better. Spend time working out your presentation - remember getting the right graphic/images could make is just so much more communicating.
  4. A catchy website URL- there is really nothing like a web URL! for the company that clearly defines what you intend to do. This is invariably a one time choice - so think through and work out your thoughts with the name. For those who still believe offline is the only business - spending time online and having a good website could make a enormous difference.
  5. Blog - Developing a habit of blogging pretty regularly is important when you intend to communicate with your audience regularly.
Start-ups would benefit by devoting time towards a sustained communication effort. It would be ideal for the founding team to sit down on the communication dimension periodically and take stock of what they are trying to pitch right from day one (or even earlier depending on when they are booking their URL). 

Even as little as 30 minutes a week to re-look at the way you communicate could emerge very fruitful.Keep the audience coming back for more interesting, relevant aspects. So take the time off and get your communication plan worked out.

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