I recently had the privilege of volunteering as a coach at Portland, Maine’s, first Startup Weekend. It was fun, interesting and eye-opening!
On the first evening of the event, over 40 people took to the stage to pitch their idea for a business. They had sixty seconds to do so and were supposed to answer these four questions:
Who am I (introduction)?
What problem am I solving?
How will I solve it?
Who else do I need on my team?
The most amazing thing happened! Only five out of the nearly 45 entrepreneurs who pitched their business, answered this question: What problem am I solving?
And here in lies the problem.
Most of the people said something like this, “My idea is to start an organic soda pop business.” Or, “I love to drive motorboats, so I thought it would be cool to start a rental boat business,” blah, blah, blah.
So many times when someone thinks they have a good idea for starting a business, they fail to answer the question, “what problem am I solving?”
And when pitching your business, whether it’s to get money, win a contest, attract an investor or resources, you MUST remember to answer this question and clearly define, what problem am I solving? Typically a pitch only allows you a set amount of time to lay out your business idea, so it’s crucial right up front to answer this question.
One of the best ways to address it is to tell a story about the problem. Now, of course you probably couldn’t tell a story in a sixty second pitch, but you certainly could tell one in a 3-10 minute pitch. And storytelling, by far, is the best way to capture people’s attention.
Also, you need to remember the problem you are solving stems from your perspective and experience. However, it’s absolutely critical that you do some market research to figure out is there really a problem? And of course, do enough people, besides you, believe it’s a problem?
Lastly, I’d like to point out, that even if you’re not pitching your business, or perhaps you already have an established business, the question, what problem am I solving, needs to continuously be in the forefront of your entrepreneurial mind every day! This is the kind of mindset that makes for a successful business!
|Mandy works with talented, high energy self employed professionals and very small businesses who struggle to market their business effectively, stretch their capacity and play a bigger game. Mandy’s client’s receive proven, specific information on what they need to do to get more clients and grow their business. As a result, those who coach with Mandy increase their business, get more clients and make more money, faster and easier than they ever would have on their own. Sign up for her free Cd “7 Productivity Secrets of Successful Entrepreneurs” right down below.