Last Wednesday I had lunch with my old friend Bobby from Berlin. In the enjoyable ambience of Pan Asia he explained his new business model to me. As usual I didn’t get it; too technical, too wishy-washy, too far away from the point.
Bobby is not alone. Hardly anybody can tell me the core of their business models in a few words. Good inspiration comes from Verne Harnish, the founder of Gazelles and one of the creators of Entrepreneurs’ Organization. When asked what he does Verne always starts with the same phrase: “The problem we solve is… ”
Stefan Glänzer, one of Europe’s top early stage investors hit the same nail during a round table discussion at the web conference Heureka this week. He said that start-ups should stop analyzing models and start to solve problems.
So I asked Bobby: “What is the problem you solve?”
It took us some twenty minutes until we had cut out all bullshit bingo jargon like “increasing efficiency”.
In the end we came up with a two-sentence paragraph:
We solve the problem of distribution loss in online advertising. Thanks to our state-of-the-art technology, which enables real-time ad management, we reduce the distribution loss by up to 30%.
I asked myself the same question. It’s a first draft line, but then again it’s like the IPO prospectus of Facebook says: Done is better than perfect.
“The problem I solve is that I take away people’s fear of speaking in public and turn public speaking into a fun and fulfilling experience.”
So – what is the problem YOU solve?