A Simple Pivot’s Ability to Save Your Startup

A Simple Pivot’s Ability to Save Your Startup

Simon Jenner - Million Labs

Simon Jenner

Wednesday, 23 September 2020

A Simple Pivot’s Ability to Save Your Startup

Some of the biggest companies had to pivot to save their business, once-upon-a-time. So can you.

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Imagine: You’ve nailed down the perfect solution to a massive gap in your target market. You’ve validated your business case, established your unique selling point, and created the perfect no-code MVP. You’re confident.
But the MVP-testing stage doesn’t quite go as expected. The feedback isn’t exactly positive, and the early adopters are less than thrilled with your MVP. 

Sure, you could stick your chest out and continue forward anyway - at the risk of watching your startup crumble at a record rate.

Instead, we suggest considering this moment to be a sign to pivot your approach. Don’t worry, we aren’t saying to scrap your approach entirely! Instead, you just need to change your perspective a little; create a new hypothesis in relation to your business model, product or service, and MVP app.

Let’s take a look at 10 types of pivoting:

1. Channel Pivot
A Channel Pivot occurs when the distribution channel for your product is changed. Perhaps your original channel was just too complicated for consumers to access - or maybe even not complicated enough if your target audience is seeking a premium, exclusive product.

2. Value Capture Pivot
The value you impose on your company or product may make a difference in your MVP app’s success as well. Beyond just the revenue or monetisation, you can pivot the intrinsic value that your product or entire business carries. 

3. Technology Pivot
If you alter the technology integrated into your Big Idea, is there a chance you could enhance the performance to make your product more appealing? Can a different technology allow you to offer your product at a lower price? This is called the Technology Pivot. 

4. Customer Need Pivot
Now that you’ve conducted MVP-testing with members of your target audience, you may have gotten to know them a bit better and discovered that the problem you originally identified either is no longer a big problem or never even was one. But they do have a different problem you can tweak your product to solve. 

5. Customer Segment Pivot
Alternatively, you’ve confirmed that the problem you are solving is a very true and real problem - just not for the customer segment you originally anticipated. Pivot your product to solve the problem for this new customer segment instead.

6. Engine of Growth Pivot
The Engine of Growth Pivot involves a need to change your growth strategy. This may be a change to the profitability or speed at which your company grows. In order to accomplish this, you may need to consider a Value Capture Pivot as well.

7. Business Architecture Pivot
This type of pivot requires entirely changing the architecture of your startup. In his work, Geoffrey Moore identified two types of business architectures: the Complex Systems Model (high margin, low volume) and the Volume Operations Model (low margin, high volume). For example, this may require a shift from mass market to a more detailed sales cycle - or vice versa. 

8. Platform Pivot
If your end product is an app, this might be a game-changing pivot for you. A Platform Pivot occurs when you change from an app to a computing platform or a computing platform to an app. This pivot comes in handy if you have external parties who want to use your platform for building their own products. 

9. Zoom In Pivot
The Zoom In Pivot involves being more myopic. Did your test users absolutely love one feature in your MVP but weren’t very keen on anything else? Capitalise on that. Pivot to find a way for that one feature to become the entire product.

10. Zoom Out Pivot
The Zoom Out feature is the opposite - was your MVP great in theory, but needed more substance behind it? You can pivot to think bigger. Make your current product a feature of an even bigger final product.

As you can see, a failure in your MVP-testing is no means for panic. You haven’t wasted your time and money, your entire project isn’t a loss. Pivoting is an incredible way to take the hard work you’ve done, turn it on its side, shake it around a little, and see what surprises fall out. 

If you’re struggling to choose a pivoting strategy, or even need help from the beginning of your startup, we’re here to help. Check out our No-Code Bootcamp.

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