You have an idea, great! Here’s what to do next:

5 04 2013

You have an idea. Great! 🙂

Copy this article into a Google Doc.

Write the idea down here:



Write the idea down in less than four sentences:



If you can’t easily explain why you exist, none of the subsequent steps matter.  A good format is “We help X do Y by doing Z”. If you really have trouble explaining what you do, give a friend/stranger/whatever a longer explanation and ask them to summarize that back to you. Other people are often great at crafting an understandable value proposition.

Write a minimum of 300 words about the idea or how it came about:



Rewrite the idea down in less than two sentences:

Continue to step 1.

  1. Find a name you like.

    1. Use to brainstorm/validate the name. works too if you are looking for a specific name.

      1. Create a list of ten names you REALLY like!

      2. Cross reference the name with Google search to see if you have any mega competition. Look at the number of results (under 15 million is ideal) and the quality of the top results.

        1. example of Mega competition: spicy pop

        2. example of Little competition: spicy unicorn

      3. Cross reference the name with Google Keyword tools to see if people search an exact match (this can also be used for domain name idea generation)

      4. See if your domain is used in social media with the Name Checklist tool.

  2. Create a Gmail account. Use the name you decided on.

  3. Signup for

    1. You do not have to put in billing info.

    2. Read this from Unbounce or this from Kissmetrics… I am not sure which is better.

      1. If you are really a reader, and you don’t want to learn by doing (shame on you), you can read this awesome guide.

    3. Create a page that takes peoples email

  1. Get a domain (

    1. Link it (DO NOT FORWARD, LINK).

  2. Signup for MailChimp and link it also.

    1. I am willing to do steps 1-5 for $300.

    2. You can do it yourself in a couple hours.

    3. It’s a bad sign if you are not willing to learn/do it and want to pay me to do it… but whatever 😉

  3. Do 7 – 10 concurrently

  4. Go back to Unbounce and make three ‘variants’. Try different wording. More, less, funny, serious, etc.

  5. Get 500 local emails to sign up.

    1. Aim for 1 month (max).

    2. Start with the subcategory of Reddit and Quora that relate to your idea.

    3. Use your network to find target customers – ask your contacts, “Do you know someone with problem X? If so, can you forward this message on to them?” and provide a 2-3 sentence description

  6. Create a Wufoo form and embed it into a new page.

    1. The form should be unique to your idea.

    2. Ask a question, design a profile page… anything. Find a way to get people engaged. (asking for help here is okay… I need to explain better)

    3. Maybe put a “pre-order” form in place (collecting billing information) even before you’re ready to collect money or have a full product.

  7. Get a Wistia account.

    1. Watch their video on “explainer videos” and “lighting”.

    2. Create a quick down and dirty explainer video.

      1. Do not spend more than 5-8 hours!!!! Ideally less than 2. Perfect isn’t the point. In this exercise, done is the point.

    3. create a variant of your landing page / home page

      1. in the new variant, embed the video above the fold

    4. Run an A/B test.

  8. Comeback, and ask me what the next step is.




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