These are words I am sure we have all muttered at some point. As mobile apps continue to grow year over year, more and more people are looking create the next monster app. We see it everyday, "I have a million dollar app idea, but I have no idea how this works." Or, "I have the next Uber, and I have $10,000 to build it!" As you continue to research app development companies, and how to market apps, you quickly realize the process is much more daunting than originally anticipated. This post aims to assist you on your journey to tech entrepreneurship. Part 1, will focus on what you should focus on prior to reaching out to any potential development companies.
So let's help answer the age old question of, "I have a great idea... Now what?"
First things first. Think through your idea as thoroughly as possible.
Identify the following questions:
- What is the purpose of the app?
- What current challenge or inefficiency does it solve?
- Who is my target audience?
- What is the competitive landscape?
- What is the total market opportunity?
These are 5 very basic questions, but you would be surprised how many people do not think this through before continuing along the journey. Creating a business plan that answers these questions is a great start to determining if the investment in your app is worthwhile.
Second, try to identify what your MVP entails.
MVP stands for Minimum Viable Product. An MVP includes the absolute necessary features the app needs to achieve its purpose and solve the identified inefficiency. If you seek to build the next TikTok/Facebook/Instagram/Uber or other highly successful viral app, you need to understand that they have invested MILLIONS of dollars into those platforms. The good news though, is that most of these companies started out just like you. By identifying the core features vs. the "nice to have" features, you will be better able to set a budget and communicate the goals to a potential investor or development partner.
Third, set a realistic budget.
What available funds do you have that you are willing to invest in your idea? Do you need to raise money through family/friends, Angels, or VC's? If so put this in your business plan so as you start reaching out to potential partners, you can provide them with realistic expectations. If you are unsure if you will need outside investment, understand that very few worthwhile MVP's can be completed under $50,000.
Fourth, research current apps in the market that either compete with your idea, or you really enjoy from a user perspective.
If competitors exist, read through the reviews on the app store and determine what they do well, and where they fall short. Identify how your app can solve these pain points, and attract users. Also think about how you want the app to look and feel. Which apps are visually appealing to you? This will give your development partner a better idea of your aesthetic preferences.
So, in conclusion, completing these four steps upfront will dramatically improve the process as you continue the journey. Once you have all of these items identified, you are ready to continue on to part 2, finding the right partner.