If you’re reading this, it’s too late…..

….to get back to #1 because I’m ready to dig deep into something which is going to be invaluable for so many entrepreneurs.

More than a month ago we had our first ever roundtable with our early-adopters (we like to call them Founding Members). It was a huge THING for the whole team. And I won’t lie, there was a lot of pressure on us to prepare everything down, so that everyone will be satisfied. Pheeew!

While in this process and during the roundtable, we understood a couple of things that might come in handy for any entrepreneur. We were stressed, but what we uncovered reinforced how we see our early-adopters.

When a person adopts your product you feel like you just won the highest prize. I mean, can it get better than this? Someone just bought your product and is willing to use it. In other words, he just made a risky investment. While our early adopters had been giving us great input all along, we were still restrained when approaching our early-adopters for feedback. However, we were under pressure when there was no need to be. Whenever we had challnges, we found it hard to approach them and ASK FOR MORE.

Wait. By ”more” I am not speaking about money. In this case ”more” means H-E-L-P.

In some cases, you get the buy-in from an early adopter only to find that they never give a second thought to your project again. We were hoping this wouldn’t be the case. Lucky for us, there was no need to worry! And boy, I’m glad for this. When we invited our early-adopters to a roundtable to hear their input and discuss the software and next step, they were only too happy to participate!

We were thinking more about the involvement of early-adopters as a responsibility rather than a two-way relationship. Yes, the responsibility is there, but it’s on both sides.

So where am I going with this? A simple statement: ”Don’t be afraid to ask your early-adopters for help WHENEVER you need it.”

Since the very beginnings of GliderPath, we wanted to share the product development with our early-adopters. We wanted GliderPath TMS to be their baby too! In that case, it’s absolutely relevant to ask for help.

It took us a while to make the most out of this two-way relationship. But once we got there, we turned it into a win-win situation for both the early adopters as users and us as the developers of the tool. It’s only the question of realizing that you not only can but must rely on your early-adopters. It’s much deeper than you would originally think.

Don’t be afraid to strive for a deeper better relationship with your users and early adopters. Make sure you ask for more than advice. Ask for help whenever you need it. Remember that they are helping you get where you both want to get.

If you’ve also come to this realization. Feel free to let us know in which situation this happened to you? And we would absolutely love to talk with you about the role of early-adopters in the growth of a startup. Leave us a comment and let’s share some more value!

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