When do you know you’re ready to show your product to the world?
The Lean Startup Movements tells you to launch early (very early) and often (very often). Common sense tells you to launch when the product is actually ready (whatever that means). The perfectionist will tell you to launch only when the product is really ready.
Yesterday a fellow Heretic sent me the following question around this topic:
“I’m not a natural at sales and marketing and have a tendency to worry whether something is good enough before I show it to people — I’m sure this is a female thing… Anyway, I’ve been offered an opportunity to exhibit at a really high profile conference at a really good price, with a chance to be in front of some influential people in the health sector. However my product won’t really be ready, probably mostly functional but looking really terrible and clunky. So… do I go ahead and create some great marketing materials to spark interest, discussion and potentially future sales — or could I damage the brand by being there with something that doesn’t yet work as well as I want it to?”
Tell you what: If you fuck up — nobody will remember. Literally. You are not Apple, Microsoft, Google or Facebook (yet). You don’t have “a brand” (yet).
And chances are — you won’t actually fuck up. It might not be great and it might not be even good — but it also might just be good enough to get some interesting discussions going. Why not take the shot?
Never hold back. As long as you can stand behind your work — just go for it! You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.