Well, first of all, you need to know
what who Spock is. If you already know him, I salute you. The only ‘logical’ thing for you to do, is to skip his introduction.
Who is Spock?
Mr. Spock, as we should address him, is a fictional character living in the Star Trek universe. What makes him so special is that he is part human and part Vulcan. Being Vulcan means he is born with some unique characteristics and traits that would make every Growth Hacker in the galaxy jealous.
A Vulcan knows no jealousy, in a matter of fact, Vulcans completely lack the ability to experience emotions at all. Vulcans don’t value them. They would only get in the way. That is what gives them an edge at the opposite side of the spectrum. They are masters in analyzing everything in the most rational way possible. Logic is their greatest virtue. That’s what they are truly famous for, aside from their funny ears and weird taste for haircuts of course.
That’s where Growth Hacking comes in!
If I had to name one thing, I learned from my traineeship at TTI it’s that the Growth Mindset is logic in its purest form.
The traditional way people tried to build a business or launch a new product is something like this: They wake up with an idea for a product they assume kicks ass. They develop the product and work their ass off to perfect it. When it’s completely ready and even the packaging is designed, it’s time to shine. The product enters the market. But then our would-be entrepreneur comes to the devastating conclusion that nobody wants to buy his ‘Automatic Pet Petter’ (Yes, this is a real product idea!)
You don’t need to be Spock to know this is very illogical, to say the least.
The problem with doing business like this is that most people trust their gut a bit too much. Something Spock would never do. He would probably wonder why people trust the success of their business to their intestines in the first place.
Validate like a Vulcan
No, a Vulcan like Spock would never blindly follow assumptions. He would test and validate everything. Just like we learned when becoming a Growth Hacker. I can imagine Spock thinking about inventing a new improved phaser weapon. The first logical step for him tot take is to find out if there is a ‘problem-market fit’. Is there any need for a better one? If so, who are the people (or other life forms) that need it the most? He would probably start his search by ‘mind-melting’ with a bunch of cadets to fill in his questionnaire with the speed of light. Success! Or not?
No, because ‘no business plan survives first contact with customers’ as famous startup guru Steve Blank teaches us. So, what If the cadets liked the phaser just as it is and didn’t need a new one? Logically, Spock found this out first and quickly learned that although the cadets loved the Phaser as it is, they had some other problem with it. While analyzing his interviews he learned that they loved the phaser but hated the ugly holster! Now Spock knew he had to make the obvious, rational decision to pivot his business plan!
Pivot or die
He ran another round of mind-melting interviews and learned that the cadets wanted to customize their holsters. Because they were all the same lame greyish Enterprise colour.
So, Spock sketched up some Klingon, Borg and Hello Kitty themed holsters and ran some Facebook ads on screen at the Holodeck. Targeted on young cadets with an interest in intergalactic fashion.
Cadets were signing up for his newsletter like crazy and were already asking when and where they could buy the holsters. Some even did feature requests. Like if it would be possible to customize them by themselves! Spock was happy with the results. Time for business!
In hindsight, Spock’s startup methods seem so logical. Yet a lot of businesses do it the other way around and burn all their money on building stuff nobody wants!
So illogical, yet so human…
In my next blog, I’ll cover the next steps Mr. Spock would take to make his entrepreneurial adventure a success in the most logical way possible.