Startup Lockdown — Day 3 — Voyahago

The third day we started with the most defined idea — a tool to help people build a skill over their vacation. This was prompted from Caitlin’s Kiteboarding vacations. She spent a month in Cabarete over the summer practicing — but it took her forever to find the best place — compiling information from forums all over the internet.

It also wasn’t just Caitlin, Libby tweeted about the same problem:

I’m also in this boat. I spent part of January doing Yoga in Cambodia. I went to Italy because my friend was doing research in Pompeii. Longer ago I went Horseback riding at Bellota Ranch in Arizona. I would use this product if it existed!

Process

This day was definitely one where we “frankensteined” the process more than was helpful.

Caitlin wanted to stay truer to the original Startup Lockdown process (focused primarily on validation) instead of on the process we’d been using (starting from a problem area and finding customer insights). She felt obligated to keep pieces of what we’d done on days one/two — in part because I’d been really emphatic about user testing.

Pick the Right Users

We should’ve built for the few people we knew had this problem. Instead, we spent some time interviewing people in coffee shops — but most people don’t think of their vacations this way. If you already decided what the exact problem you’re solving for, don’t interview people who don’t have that problem.

Impact on Me

I think the most important thing I got out of this was that my process isn’t necessarily right. I’ve been really attached to the idea of doing deep user research to get insights. I’m also relatively bought in on “founders solving their own problems”. That said, I’m pretty deeply attached to my own process. I didn’t realize how inflexible I was until this week. I’m going to commit to being more open minded with trying out different ones.

Prioritizing

This was also a day that I felt “prioritization” keenly. We spent a long time finding good stock photography and actually researching good travel sites. This ended up being very time consuming. We might have been better off outsourcing that to someone else to research, and continuing to test and see what types of trips people were interested / tried to actually book someone a trip.

Naming Stuff is Hard

Each time we had a really hard time nailing the name, logo, and brand voice for the company. This was no exception. It was the first time we managed to get a .com domain though!

Final Product: Voyahago: Book your trip based on what you want to learn.