Theft and Death are Not Sustainable, For Now

People will only give you their money in exchange for things they need or want. Full stop. That’s it.

As a business model, the only other way to separate people from their cash is either theft or death. Since I don’t recommend either of these as sustainable options, we’ll discount them until that changes.

So then, if you want to make a lot of money it would make sense to sell something that a lot of people want. (Shiny tracks)

Well. What do people want?

The quick and dirty way to figure that out is to collect 200-500 reviews for the product or service you’re selling. It’s ok if you don’t have your own reviews yet. Go to Amazon or Google and copy/paste reviews for products or services similar to yours.

Once you’ve got all your reviews collected, read each one carefully. Look for the themes that are true across many of the reviews. What are the five to ten good things people like? What are the things they hate?

This will take some hard analytical work. There’s a good chance it won’t be the obvious reasons. You might have to infer the underlying motivations for people’s love or hate. But trust me, it’ll be worth the effort.

From your own offering, cut out the bad things and build in the good ones. By the end of this process, you’ll have something you can be truly proud of. Now it’s time to go to market. You’ll have the answer to the question people really were asking.

Enjoy rolling around in your three-foot-tall piles of cash.

– Zac Smith, VC