Consider the Marketability of Your Business - dummies

Consider the Marketability of Your Business

By Jim Muehlhausen

Investors looking at promising business models often don’t want to hear, “Everyone needs this product.” When investors hear, “Everyone needs this product,” they may get the impression that you don’t understand your market.

The Gentle Ear Wax Vacuum Cleaner removes water and gunk from your ears via a battery powered, hand-held vacuum that you insert into your ear. The idea makes perfect sense: everyone has ears, everyone needs to clean those ears, and the existing solution, cotton swabs, can damage your ears. Shoot, everyone needs this product. Do you believe everyone will be buying an ear vacuum cleaner? I don’t.

People don’t buy what they need. People buy what they want. Everyone has ears, but everyone doesn’t need or want an ear vacuum. Only people dissatisfied with cotton swabs and the inclination to stick a vacuum in their ears are prospects.

The marketability portion of your business model requires you to conservatively define your market rather than broadly define it. Be conservative. Define your market in the narrowest sense and see whether your business model still works. If so, you have a winner. You’ll probably gain customers outside this narrow definition. That will only add to your success.