Build it and They Will Come

Maybe, Who Knows?

Of course, the actual quote from Field of Dreams is “If you build it, he will come,” but somehow it has been changed in our collective memories to “Build it and they will come.”—a mantra that is more likely to lead to failure than success.

Few ideas are market-ready and poised for success at launch, but they don’t need to be. We have been brain-washed with this very outdated saying that “you only get one chance to make a good first impression.” This is a saying that implies we have a very small audience for our products and services and that no one will give us a second chance. Ever listen to ZZ Top’s First Album (yes, their debut album is titled ZZ Top’s First Album) or Def Leppard’s first album or watched the first season of The Simpsons? Those should have been the first and last LP ZZ Top or Def Leppard ever recorded and the first and last season of The Simpsons. But we all know that’s not the case and they got better over time and everyone pretty much forgot about their “first impression.”

What I am trying to point out here is that launching, getting your talent out into the world, is paramount. Until you launch, until people can buy your product or services, all you have is your belief that people want what you have and that they will pay to get it. Now you might also have a handful of people who have said they like your idea and cannot wait until it’s available for purchase but you should be wary of enthusiasm that is not backed by any payment.

Thanks to the Internet and the popularity of crowdfunding sites, you can test the market potential of your idea long before you max out your credit cards. When you think about it, crowdfunding is nothing more than getting pre-orders. In fact, you can take pre-orders without using a crowdfunding site. The Key, however, is to do it. Do not spend years planning and prototyping. Put together a small team, build out the concept and then take pre-orders. Let the market tell you if they want your amazing invention before you waste valuable time and resources on it.

Take your idea, craft a story around it, pitch the story, take pre-orders, and then build it. Heck even let the people that pre-order have some input along the way. See if there is something you missed that they want, make that enhancement and sell even more.