It's not about suits

I really appreciate wearing suits. Though I must admit I don't wear suits anymore in the startup universe, there is nothing like a nicely tailored costume.

Let's take Hugo Boss as an example, they offer ready to wear costumes that should fit anyone. But if you are skinny as I am, well, the costume might not look that nice, despite its great design and high quality. And here, Hugo Boss propose you its tailor's service: A few changes and the suite looks perfect. Then, you might be really off scale and have specific needs, or just want to have a unique piece and have to go for the made to measure suits.

Well SaaS solutions are a bit on the same scheme. And designing one raise the question : which part of the market will you cover? I believe all startups have been through that. You know that a one size fits all is the easiest way, but if you are in the B2B world as we do, then it's not enough. You need to propose the tailor service, or at least the tailor's tools to cover the needs of 90% of your target. The last 10% are the one needing the custom tailored service.

It's more likely that a startup can't cover the whole market. The 10% requires time, people, development, maintenance, and a startup won't have the resources. So you might aim at covering 90% of your target by offering generic solutions which would cover most of your clients' needs. Then add tools that allow your clients to customise its solution and take care himself of the rest, after all, he knows its business better than you. Just help him get the most of your product.

Here is my advice: if your offer is plan based, stick to the plan!

You don't want to spend half of your resources on one customer, unless there are only two on earth. Find what the majority really needs. Don't develop a feature because one user wants it. Do it because only one doesn't need it and its implantation will help you  acquire more users, and help you design the universal service.

Listen to your market, listen to your users, and always remember who you are designing your solution for: the 10% or the 90%?

With ZeroKeyboard, we have chosen to help the most.

Have a good day, and see you in San Francisco next month!

Xavier