No entrepreneur starts with her final idea. In fact, often an entrepreneur needs to change her business in dramatic ways throughout the startup process – this could involve changing a product, service, business model, or the plan for growth. These changes are often prompted through customer discovery, and they are called pivots.
First-time entrepreneurs tend to see it as counterproductive; we think we already know who our customer is, and we think the first step should be building our idea (app, website, product, etc.) as quickly and as best as we can. The truth is you’re probably wrong about who your customer is if you haven’t done customer discovery, and if you don’t truly understand the person who will be using your thing, you won’t be able to make your thing the thing they want to use.
Knowing your customer is as important as knowing your product. E@D caught up with students working on their mock startups to understand what has primary research helped them achieve as they develop prototypes and minimally viable products.