Build, Test, Review
What happens when you have a brilliant idea? Something you can’t nudge out of your brain and wholeheartedly believe will benefit the masses? How do you start the process that allows you to share that entrepreneurial spirit or vision with others in a way that actually works? Build, test, review.
There is only one way to know and that is to get your idea out there. Even if it isn’t in its final iteration, if you build it they will come. Well, we hope ‘they’ do. But we all have to start somewhere.
You need to run it by your fiercest critics and see if they see your idea the same way you do.
Testing is the next step and critical to establishing if what you have to offer is valued by your target market. If ‘they’ aren’t responding, buying, or committing to your value proposition then build again, with tweaks.
How do you know what your target market wants? Review, review, review. Feedback is critical. You might know your idea is spot on but the delivery may be off, the onboarding too unwieldy, or the product not quite fit for purpose.
What do businesses need to consider when assessing their product/app/service and whether it is creating the right message as well as getting customers or clients to buy-in?
Test and Review
Every entrepreneur has their product or service, and in this digital age, almost every business has a website. And if you don’t, why not? Analytics are available and can add a huge value to the data you can utilise to great effect. An idea in its infancy can yield plenty of information from the get-go using a site with simple business experiments to fine-tune your offer.
Even a basic website should be created at the outset and it doesn’t have to have all the bells and whistles. Although major corporations run thousands of tests concurrently in many cases, that takes dedicated departments to coordinate and analyse.
Test and learn is the approach using the A/B control and action group which is easily interpreted.
Any manager or business owner can do this! What you want to avoid when businesses are further into their journey is when HiPPO’s get involved.
The Highest Paid Person’s Opinion can often influence the acceptance of test results. Sometimes they just don’t want to believe the data and can reject it. But tests don’t lie.
It’s important to acknowledge and accept your client or customer’s responses. That feedback mechanism is critical to understanding the behaviour of your target audience and when the majority have spoken, they have spoken!
The Golden Rules for Running Tests
Start with the simplest tests first and eliminate actions that are easily identified (like a price change!).
The key is to observe your customer’s reactions. They will give clear insights and help identify opportunities for agile adjustments, guiding you towards other tests that will drill down to your best possible offer.
Think Individual, Think Short Term
It’s easiest to observe individual responses instead of large demographics, and you need to evaluate experiments where customers can respond immediately.
Choose test actions that won’t require you to rewrite the manual or retrain your team. Tests that need extensive cash input and sweeping change are not what you should be aiming for, at least not at the start. Save your resources until you delve deeper and get more concrete answers from your feedback.
Slice the Data
When you get data, you can analyse the results by comparing gender, age, location and so on. Although you might not know who is randomly selected for your control and action groups, you can look for subgroups within each to assess what, if any, impact other parameters have on the feedback. This can help identify and target your core audience even further.
Next Steps to Test and Review
All of these elements are there to help you make better decisions as a business owner. If you’re not sure where to start on your own you can try a consultant or coach who might be able to guide you on some smart tests to trial in addition to their relevant experience in the sector.
Build, test, review. It should be an ongoing process until you figure out the secret sauce that makes your business unstoppable and achieves greatness.
Even when you’re at the top, never sit on your laurels. Apathy and steady-as-she-goes thinking aren’t what keep the global companies that are killing it in their respective markets in pride of place.
Always think bigger, think outside of the box, and keep making it happen!