As a person who believes deeply in the Lean Startup methodology, I would start the conversation urging you to stop building your prototype. Clear the space for you to do significant customer engagement.
The Lean Startup idea is that you put Customer Development before Product Development. That is you talk to , understand and adapt to a customer base, discovering and validating your customers before you build things.
You have three main risks:
1) Technical Risk - Can it be built
2) Market Risk - Should it be built
3) Execution risk - Can my team build it
These are in order. Chances are, you do not have technical risk.
And Chances are that you have not talked to enough customers to resolve that there are really customers who have a real problem that are really willing to pay you. (Note that there is a significant difference between the 98% of people who are cheerleaders that tell you happy thoughts and the 2% of customers who really really really are ready to pay you now to solve a problem)
You need to find 100 customers who really really really want to pay you now to solve a problem; before you take one more step on building the product, find those 100 people.
I recommend that you read these three books, in order:
Running Lean by Ash Maurya
Lean Customer Development by Cindy Alvarez
Scaling Lean by Ash Maurya.
And I recommend that you get the Startup Owners Manual by Steve Blank, and strive to read one page a day. Keep reading pages one at a time until they start falling into place.
This would allow you to get focus on this Customer Development before Product Development.
If you are ready to take a leap into a Customer Development experiment, take a look at the work of Adam Berk ( @adamberk ) as outlined in http://www.oomaat.com/2016/10/just-one-lean-experiment-to-progress-to.html
Remember in the Theory of OOMAAT, your first step is to find just one customer. Don't think about anything more than things that lead you to your first paying customer. Then we can worry about how we might get to ten paying customers.
Hey John I'm interested in exploring your next startup contest. Where should I start? I'm in Seattle, we're about to launch, its another 502 software product.
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