How ideas are born. The Story of a Startup - Part I

    TheCommentor Story - How Ideas Are BornDear Habra users, with this topic we are starting a small series of articles devoted to the history of creating a startup. The purpose of the articles is to illuminate the entire process of creation from the point of view of real life, to tell how it was, and not how it should be in theory.

    Perhaps this will help many to decide on the first step, draw some ideas or simply not step on such a rake that spoiled our nerves. We hope that everyone will find something different here. Let's go ...

    March, 2008. A bit of lyrics. My company is in bloom and growing. More and more customers, more and more thick projects, in short everything goes uphill. We are engaged in web development, graphic design and the creation of custom business systems. It would seem that what else is needed for a happy life?

    But, all this is a project business, with each new client we go through the same stages, solve the same problems, face the same misunderstanding. Whoever worked in custom web development understands me well :) In short - each time we punch our heads with the same concrete walls with only different logos.

    More projects, more customers - this is a dead end. We sell our time, but it is no longer becoming, and the price of time cannot always be raised forever. We need something of our own, something for the soul and a little for money :) A direction in which we will not need to sell our time.

    April 2008 Additional impulse. Another incentive for the development of something of their own was a visit to RIT-2008, held in Moscow. The atmosphere and reports at this conference really pushed us forward.

    May 2008 What exactly to do? Probably, we approached this issue quite trivially. And what do we, as a company, lack? We use the services of many third-party companies, some of which suit us, some not at all. But it does not make sense to do the same with slightly different functions.

    Then we went the simple way - sat down and modeled our entire internal process of working on the project from A to Z. Everything turned out smoothly with us, except for one bottleneck, namely the discussion of the sketches that our designers give birth to. It is often difficult to convey the necessary changes by phone or e-mail, and the meeting is sometimes simply impossible. And then we had a simple idea - and let's write a small service that will allow us, as a company, to solve this problem. Hooked on this idea and moved on!

    June 2008 Share your idea . Awesome idea that arose in the head of one person can be completely crazy in the head of another. Everyone knows this, so do not rush to do something right away, let the idea settle down, take shape.

    After some time, when our idea settled, we brought it to the target audience (both in our company and outside it). The reaction ranged from “Yes, it's a bomb!” To “Well, why the hell?” But, most saw the rational in our idea.

    As you know, 1 bad review costs 10 good reviews. Therefore, do not focus on bad reviews, let these people not let you kill your creation. Estimate the proportion of pros and cons, if 1 out of 5, then go ahead with boldness!

    And yet - never be afraid to share ideas, nobody will steal them from you, nobody needs it, believe me :)

    July, 2008. Competition and uniqueness. We perfectly understood that we would not make any revolution, and this is not the main goal. Therefore, it was assumed that this is already somewhere in some form. Remember, if after a thorough search your idea is nowhere and in no way implemented - think about it, most likely it just doesn’t need anyone.

    Of course, during the search we found a number of potential competitors. And, do not believe it, we were very happy about it. This proved to us that there is a market for this service, that someone is already working on it and it is growing (based on data on competitors). We spent a whole cloud of time analyzing existing services and brought out a number of advantages of our idea.

    How far will we go? We decided that our idea was entitled to a separate commercial project. It is very important to understand how far you look. Are you planning to do this for yourself, Petit, Vasya and the neighbor on the porch, or is this an idea of ​​a universal scale? Are you planning to make money on this or not? Now let's do it, and then see how far we go - it does not work!

    August 2008 All on paper! Next, we wrote down everything that we had accumulated over 4 months, starting from competitors and ending with functions for the first iteration. Paper should always be, it may lose relevance, become unnecessary, but it is needed for understanding the entire project as a whole because the head tends to miss the details, mine anyway :)

    It's time for the dough!Not. No time. Ideas are bought so rarely that you can forget about bowing to investors. We did not go, and saved a lot of time and nerves. Let's go for the money a bit later :)

    That's all, we have an idea that has already received the first comments, which has competitors and which resulted in a document! Now we are ready to make a pilot! About it in the next part of our cycle ...

    Briefly about the main part
    • even if everything is fine with you, this is not a reason not to look around and not think about changes.
    • good ideas are always around you, they are with you when you go to take out the trash or when you write another piece of code.
    • if nowhere is there even a hint of your idea - think about it, maybe nobody needs it?
    • Know competitors, learn from them, do not copy them.
    • It’s important to understand how far your idea extends commercially (if any).
    • they don’t go for the idea with money.

    Further in our cycle:
    Part II - building a pilot. About how we built, then broke and built again, and then rebuilt again. And how not to do this :)

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