Lean Startup and Customer Interviews (Boss: Kevin)

So I luuuv lean. Usually when I’m chatting with someone about their business idea, it just finds it way and sneaks into the conversation. I feel like needing to shout to the world. It is such a different way of thinking, I feel it is my responsibility to show the light 🙂

So Wednesday, it Kevin-Boss-Day. We did customer interview to find frustrating problems in social media. In 9 hours, I:

  • contacted social media expert through Toronto meetups (worked really well)
  • 5 customer interviews (of which three were great about an hour each)
  • 9 scheduled interviews within the next week


Seven Ways to Find Interviewees. blog.launchbit.com/how-to-find-and-interview-potential-customers by Elizabeth Y. I didn’t go through the list but thought I leave it hear from future reference.

  • “Spray and Pray” channels
  •    1) craigslist
  •    2) online groups (google, yahoo, facebook, ning)
  • In Person channels
  •    3) Malls & coffee shops
  •    4) meetups (meetup, eventbrite, yelp)
  • Targeted channels
  •    5) Linked In
  •    6) Alumni Networks
  •    7) Google Searches


Sample text. Although tracking down their telephone numbers proved very useful. Sometimes it is so great to just PICK UP THE PHONE!

“Hi <expert>,   Happy Wednesday!! I’m an entrepreneur in Toronto and I’m doing some research for a project on social media and am trying to learn how what frustrates people about social media. I’d really love the chance to chat with you, would you be free for a 12 minute call sometime this week. Please let me know, it would really make my day!  Cheers, Christine”


I left my questions pretty open ended so that I wouldn’t skew the conversation (I often do).

  • What are the most frustrating aspects of ABC
  • If you had a magic want to help you with ABC, what would it do?


Conclusion. Great conversations! I’ve done a few more interview since Wed, still most last an hour. Then I would followup with my mock which I created using photoshop in an hour. Helps people really visualize my thoughts. Just like it helped my clients visual my designs in floorplans for event planning.  I know people have mentioned this before, but damn. I’m getting pretty good at this customer interview stuff 🙂





Playing boss

Decided that we are going to take turns playing ‘boss’. Kevin has Monday, Wednesday, Friday and I have Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday. So we are going back to explore Social Media. On Tuesday, I decided to create a little competition using adwords. We had no landing pages, no specific product idea, no adword accounts, no google analytics. Originally, I said by the end of the day 8 hours, but extended it for 24 hour period.

  • Impressions (worth 1 point)
  • Clicks (worth 1,000 points)
  • Sign up (worth 10,000 points)


  • $75 free credits from hostmonster 
  • assigned domain asidenote.com
  • used facebook, adwords, blogs, craigslist, forums
  • RESULT: $3.16 facebook ad
  • RESULT: 0 clicks, 600 impressions, $0 google ads


  • $100 free credit from google
  • assigned domain knapkins.com
  • used adwords
  • my resource restraint was time and soget my ads up as soon as possible
  • used content from industry expert Jeremiah Owyang
  • RESULT: 152,104 impressions, 15 clicks, $8.16 google ads
  • PS: I WON 🙂