I'm an entrepreneur, or at least an entrepreneur wannabe; which means I like to read. I call it continuous education. I can read all day about software development, business validation, marketing, user experience design, and so on. I think it's great to have the motivation to learn but a lot of this is noise from what I'm trying to build: a business.
A couple of weeks ago, I read a book called The 7 Day Startup. I've read many entrepreneurial books before... The Lean Startup, The $100 Startup, Business Model Generation, The Startup Owner's Manual... and they all share similar concepts, but this one was different. Maybe I took it in differently because of the situation I was in; a startup that I've worked on for over a year has ended. The book was very easy to digest because the whole book focuses on one idea:
You Don't Learn Until You Launch
I read the entire book in one sitting and set a goal of $1,500 of pre-orders by the end of February. I also decided to start getting pre-orders the very next day. It's interesting how focused you become when you have a real deadline. I stayed up all night getting ready - setting the price, updating the website, writing a story, and scheduling an email blast. As you can tell from this website, it's nowhere near as polished as you would expect but it was time to launch. I wasn't exactly ready yet; I still had a lot to figure out:
- How am I going to manufacture the product?
- Where do I get the materials?
- How much is packaging?
- How much shipping? How am I going to ship?
- How about the labor costs?
- What are the dimensions for stickers going to be?
While these are all important questions, you can still launch without having the answers to everything. Heck, I didn't even have the dimensions of the whiteboard but I was confident that I can find out what will make people happy and deliver.
Start small. Start now.
I would like to thank everyone that signed up for the Sketchcase Giveaway. Even though it began with a bunch of people that signed up for a giveaway because I had some leftover materials, you guys encouraged me to keep going with the project. Also, a big thank you to everyone that made pre-orders!