How Much Money Does Your Startup Need To Generate Traction?

Certainly, this is the kind of question you need to answer in order to improve your startup’s chances of success.

While the lack of cash means the end of your startup’s activities, raising too much money may force you into unnecessary sacrifices—delivering too much equity to investors, accepting unfavorable terms, etc.

Hey! To make the most of this learning, I’m providing you a FREE SPREADSHEET, so you may practice with your own numbers… 

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Riby: How a Fintech Got Traction By Helping People On Accessing Financial Services In Africa – with Abolore Salami [Ep#8]

Here we go to Africa, where we find many people who work hard but have difficulties in earning a good income as well as in saving for their futures.

And these are exactly the issues that our next guest, Abolore Salami, is addressing through his  startup: Riby.

Riby provides cooperatives a platform to organize their businesses as well as to help their customers to engage in financial activities as receiving, payment and saving money.

Want to see how Riby has generated traction? Don’t miss this episode!

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Define Your Startup’s Minimum Viable Product (MVP)

You’ll only be able to generate good traction when all the three elements of your idea are properly defined—the problem, the solution and the business model.

Which means your assumptions about each one of these elements have to be true.

And to know which of your current assumptions work and those that should be replaced by better assumptions, there is just one way, my friend: to validate them in the market—with real people.

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Bambu: How a Robo-Advisory Platform For Financial Institutions Generated B2B Traction – with Ned Phillips [EP#7]

Undoubtedly, personal financial planning is at the core of all significant financial achievements we have in our lives. Considering that our biggest financial goals are achieved only through the right balance between long-term and short-term spending decisions, it is important to have a good discipline to achieve them.

Bambu developed a digital solution that provides financial institutions a way to help their customers to have that discipline. Through a robo-advisory platform, it gathers information about each customer’s financial goals as well as their spending habits to provide them a clear way to monitor their level of achievement and to suggest ways of improving their saving decisions.

In this episode, Ned Phillips—Bambu co-founder—tells me his startup’s journey from the initial idea to the traction stage. 

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Boostlingo: Traction Of A Platform That Connects Interpreters To The World – with Dieter Runge [EP#6]

A patient who needs to communicate with her doctor in another language. An accused person that needs to speak in foreign country court. A deal going on between two negotiators of different native languages. What all these cases have in common? The need for an interpreter.

Today, we’ll know the story of Boostlingo, an unified interpretation platform that is connecting interpreters from all over the world to people and organizations that need them in many different situations.

For people and companies, Boostlingo provides a way to easily schedule interpretation services. For interpreters, it provides a system through which they can deliver their services as well as manage their interpretation businesses. 


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Think Exponentially When Building Your Startup

With the first version of your business model canvas, you are ready to check if your assumptions will succeed or fail.

However, I ask you to think BIG.

Salim Ismail, Michael Malone and Yuri Geest identified 10 attributes of what they call the Exponential Organizations (check their book here):

An Exponential Organization is one whose impact (or output) is disproportionally large—at least 10x larger—compared to its peers because of the use of new organizational techniques that leverage accelerating technologies.

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Designing Your Hypothesis Through The Business Model Canvas

After assessing your startup idea, it’s time to translate it into a business model hypothesis, which will help you on better:

  1. Visualizing the idea: the business model hypothesis will consolidate the problem and the solution in the business model component called “value proposition” which—with other 8 components—will bring you a clearer picture of what you’re aiming to build.
  2. Communicating the idea: once it is easier to visualize it, it will be easier to communicate your idea to other stakeholders as: employees, co-founders and investors.
  3. Iterating the idea: With a structured framework, it will also be easier to analyze and define which assumptions should be tested first and how could you iterate your business model hypothesis in order to achieve success.

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Exponential Organizations by Salim Ismail, Michael Malone and Yuri Van Geest


Are you designing your startup to be an exponential organization?

Don’t know what it is? Let’s hear the authors:

“An Exponential Organization is one whose impact (or output) is disproportionally large—at least 10x larger—compared to its peers because of the use of new organizational techniques that leverage accelerating technologies.”

What I love about “Exponential Organization” is that it objectively presents the factors that allow an organization to be exponential, making it easy to understand the practical applications of its principles.

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Assessing Your Startup Idea: The Problem, The Solution And The Business Model

Once you are completely sure about founding a startup (and not a small company) it’s time to assess the current strength of your startup idea.

Of course, this very first assessment is not a prediction of your startup success. Instead, the intention is to help you on thinking about the components of a great startup idea and which of these components you still need to further investigate and validate in your own idea.

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