This is a continuation post, read the previous post that explains our assignment to BUILD a company for window panels.

Here’s a summary of our journey – After talking to potential customers and experts, we decided to make a market-segment pivot. Moving from housing associations to “Homeowners looking to renovate their house in the Amsterdam area”


We also identified new assumptions:

  1. We can find renovating homeowners.
  2. Homeowners find it difficult to find the right product and supplier.
  3. We can deliver a solution that meets the need of our customers.

We tested Assumption No.1 within three weeks. We were able to capture the attention of “renovating homeowners”. We were create a steady stream of demand.


Our test case (Hypothesis)

Test card - Assumption 1By spending xyz Euro on online ads we are able to talk to at least 20 homeowners. They have a problem we can solve. They are willing to provide us with additional information.

This test passed with success.

While talking to customers we learned they had difficulties finding the right information to select a supplier they trust. This validated our the 2nd assumption.

With the first two assumptions validated we were happy with the results in  “SELECT your customer” step.


Next, we focused on our 3rd assumption:

We can deliver a solution that meets the need of our customers?


IBCKozijnen Innovation Curve startup journey vo1

Since we deliver a commodity product we thought light about the PROTOTYPE  part. Innovations on the product have been done in the past, therefore our focus moved to efforts on SELLING our product 10x.

The next step

How do we fulfill the demand with our product? How do we build a sales system that works? What should our sales price be? Does this prove our business case and finally can we turn our customers into ambassadeurs?

5 Innovation curve SELL 10x I want to have

The results
We proved that the assumed margins were realistic and the business case was healthy.
We are able to create a smooth sales flow run by a small team.
The satisfied customers referred us to others.

What we learned
We found an effective way to attract customers. We needed a way to manage that.
We focused on creating a sales system (a SELL 10x activity). In a matter of weeks a sales system was created to allowing a small team to work together smoothly.

However we are too unhappy with number of leads won.

While being busy selling to our customers we realized too many leads were lost. We lost sight of customer problems. We were pushing our product into the market instead of understanding customer problems and needs.

Why do we lose? Did we really understand their needs? Do we focus on the right activity on the right time?

This made us realize we should go back a view steps and really understand the customer.
What is most important when purchasing our product?
What are his challenges in solving his problem?

In order for us to better understand them, we returned (to one of our suggested tools) – the right side of the value proposition canvas.

Right side Value Proposition - Innovation curve

With the customer conversations we can validate and improve the Value Proposition Canvas and win more leads.


Want to know more about the Value Proposition? Watch this video and learn all you need to know.

In next weeks post we will zoom in to the way the customers solves his problem now.   How is the current customer journey for homeowners?




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