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Beta buddies in B2B

Paul Cash, CEO of Rooster Punk, says start-ups need to ask for feedback early on if they are to succeed

The goal all start-ups share is to find a sustainable and scalable business model. And so much of any new business’ success hinges on the ‘beta’ period. And it is this early stage that presents a golden opportunity to attract your first customers.

Creating a valuable business starts with gathering feedback from beta testers, or ‘beta buddies’ as I prefer to call them.

Make your business stronger
At first, the idea of opening yourself up to the masses can seem nerve-wracking, especially if you have to face up to some of the more brutally honest comments. But if you can act on feedback to make real changes, your brand and business model will only become stronger.

However, make sure you choose your beta buddies wisely – who you talk to will have an instrumental impact on the direction of your business and your future customers.

Getting people signed up for your beta group is easier thanks to platforms like Betabound and Beta Testers Hub. You can easily accrue hundreds or thousands of people that want to preview your product, but the real challenge is finding the early adopters in your target market who you could convert to fully-fledged customers later down the line.

It’s best to screen the people on your waiting list very carefully and let them know that you are running a selective process. You should aim to cumulate a small number of highly engaged and passionate users who will credibly validate your brand story and product.

Once you open the beta doors, your invited ‘buddies’ will be able to start to form their opinions and will clearly indicate if they’ve bought into your brand story, product or service.

Don’t worry if your beta testing period doesn’t quite go to plan and you get poor feedback, or worse no one actually uses your product. Valuable lessons can be learnt from failing fast; just be prepared to learn from your mistakes, make changes and try again. It’s a process of learning as much as possible about your first beta users so you can improve your product and evolve your brand into an experience customers enjoy and want to share.