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Minimum Viable Product: From MVP to Seed Funding

Minimum Viable Product: From MVP to Seed Funding

Business, SaaS
Photographer: Cytonn Photography | Source: Unsplash

Starting a business is not easy. You might come up with a perfect MVP(Minimum Viable Product) for your business but the question might be:

“How do I get funding for my startup?”

Before we deal with that question, let us first discuss what an MVP is.

A Minimum Viable Product is a new or startup product that is developed with just enough features to serve early users. The purpose of an MVP is to test your assumptions and get feedback from early users. This enables you to confirm if the product satisfies customers and use the feedback received for future development.

So, back to the question, how to get funding for your startup?

The answer is, in fact, your MVP. Yes, you’ve read it right! Building a great Minimum Viable Product can help you secure seed funding for your startup.

Why is Minimum Viable Product important?

Another question that you might have on your mind right now is:

“How will I benefit from an MVP?”

MVPs are all about testing! One of the key benefits of having one is that you would be able to test your idea with real users before spending a large budget on its full development. Doing so can save you money and effort because the feedback you obtain from your real end-users will greatly influence future product development.

With the use of MVP, you can also grow your customer base. If built properly, an MVP has the power to reduce cost while increasing efficiency, customer relationships, and even product quality.

How Can a Minimum Viable Product Help me get seed funding?

Imran Ladiwala, the founder of KIWI, shared KIWI’s journey to securing $250k in seed investment from their MVP.

He started by creating a landing page and tested this landing page with real-users. As a result, he got feedback on issues that helped him to innovate and further refine his landing page.

Through this, KIWI was able to attract over 30 clients paying $5000 each monthly!

While developing KIWI, Imran was able to speak with a lot of people about partnerships and collaborations. He also reached out to investors, pitched his product, and ended up securing himself his first $250k seed investment.

All of these resulted from one thing: he built a great MVP!

Investors are only interested in products that can actually generate revenue. What if you’ve got an MVP that’s already making revenue? Well, then your chances of having more investors will increase exponentially.

If your test product is earning revenue in an early stage, it means one thing:

It will continue to make even more revenue when it is developed and enhanced with more investment.

Moreover, if your product is already out there and people are starting to love it, you will attract even more investors.

How can I build a powerful Minimum Viable Product?

Knowing the importance of an MVP is simply not enough to get started. It is also important to know how to build a powerful MVP.

We will now briefly discuss 5 simple points on how you can build your own powerful MVP that will help you to get funding for your startup.

1. Validate Your Ideas

Photographer: Mark Fletcher-Brown | Source: Unsplash

According to Imran, when he was just starting up, he asked himself a few questions. One example was the question, “How can we help people?”. This simple question allowed him to validate his ideas regarding his product and helped him develop a powerful MVP.

Having an “awesome idea” alone is not enough to achieve success in the business. There are lots of companies that fail by not validating their ideas because they assume that simply having a unique concept is enough.

2. Create a Business Plan

In order for your Minimum Viable Product to get funding, you also need to create an effective business plan. This includes your target market, the types of services you offer, your financial plan, and more. Your business plan should provide a clear vision of the milestones and funding requirements so that potential investors will be able to see how you can achieve those milestones.

3. User Flow and Design

One critical aspect of building a powerful MVP is defining the user flow. Specifically, the user flow should focus on serving the primary goal of your business. Moreover, it must be straightforward and easy to understand.

4. List of Necessary Features

Listing your key features is important because it will show your investors how you stand out from the competition. It is also crucial to analyze your product from your user’s perspective in order to determine if your key features are actually useful.

5. Develop your MVP

work flow
Photographer: Christin Hume | Source: Unsplash

Lastly, you have to develop your MVP. One thing to keep in mind is that an MVP is not just a prototype of your product. It has to be fully functional in order to validate your ideas and get feedback from users.

Conclusion

Aside from building a great Minimum Viable Product, being passionate about what you do and being dedicated to your vision can help you achieve the success you want for your business.

Watch the full episode of SaastroTalks where Imran the founder of KIWI shares his journey to secure a $250K seed investment, from minimum viable product to funding in a year.


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