OK. If you are really thinking about CreditCardVC, if you are really thinking that you should take your idea and fund it yourself, there are a few things that you need to have.
Most of them are listed in the CreditCardVC Manifesto, but here’s another: External Validation.
This can take many forms. Some of them don’t count. For instance, if you tell an old college buddy about it, and he says it sounds like a great idea, and then changes the topic and talks about sports, it doesn’t count. If he wants to talk about it for a while, and says, “Good luck with that, man!” it still doesn’t count.
If he says, “Awesome, man, you’re going to be the next Bill Gates.” that is actually a sign that you need new old college buddies.
If he says, “Hey, I love that idea. Can I quit my job and come to work for you with no pay for the first six months?” that counts. Anything short of that does not count.
Also important is feedback in public from someone with nothing to gain or lose one way or another based on what they say. That is, getting a positive mention on the aforementioned college buddy’s MySpace page does not count.
I’ve been hesitant in this space to write too much about my current project because I fear that potential customers will see LgDb as undercapitalized and therefore somehow not trustworthy. But that probably doesn’t matter that much. Either LgDb will become the most-used site for state-level legislative information, or it won’t. Either LgDb will save them an hour or so of mind-numbing busy work every day, or it won’t. Either it will help an association make a meaningful web page, or it won’t. I think it will in all cases, which is why I shouldn’t worry so much about perceptions of perceptions.
But I want to say in this space that I’m pretty psyched about our first bit of external validation from a serious and respected blog: ColoradoStartups.com. David is usually pretty gentle with his subjects, but is willing to — correctly I’ve found — point out in his helpful way a seriously flawed business model or a glaring technical glitch or user-interface problem.
For LgDb, however, he had a positive, felicitous, and succinct summary. He even increased my base price by $45, which I see as a sign more of his perceived value in the product than a sign of his note-taking skills from a month-old conversation.
In any case, it sure is better then telling me I’ll be the next Bill Gates, so I’m excited for the write-up, and thankful to David.
And I’m looking forward to getting through the holidays so that people will focus on business again and I’ll get some more of the best external validation of all: paying customers.