Alexandre SartiniCofounder of Qui connaît un bon &

Co-Founder of Qui connaît un bon, crowdsourcing plateform to get recommandation from locals. We gathered 200 000 fans with very high level of engagement.
Co-Organizer of TEDx Liège & PechaKucha Liège
Recently released, a platform to discover Belgian radios... think of the google for radios!
Founder of Business Model Storyteller to help companies create great stories around their business model.

Recent Answers

My 'simple' answer would be to do record a screencast of your software. There are many advantages to that.

1. No trouble with live screencast, network...
2. You can add some effect (zoom in,..) to focus on specific functionalities
3. You are in control of your time and don't loose your prospect/investor time

I use Screenflow to do my screencast on iOS or OSX. Super user friendly imo.

I hope this helps a bit.

If your prospect/investor wants to see more, this is a good sign, and then you can show more on a 1-to-1 meeting or suggest to install a test version of the app so that they can get their hands on.

The acquisition cost depends on the channel you will use to reach out your clients and your ability to target them.

At first, you will probably spend quite a lot in order to find the right mix for targeting and you will hopefully improve that.

What I would do is to put a small budget and test (a lot) what are the best acquisition channel and targets.

In my case, I had the opportunity to build a platform of 200 000 users just by using the right channel and targeting the right people in 9 months with no users at all at all in the beginning. We have decreased our acquisition cost by more than 50% since the launch.

But if I can add a remark, I was not focused on the cost to acquire a user, but simply to be able to acquire some. The first objective is to understand how a client is interested by your plateform (the value of your freelancers) and how much you would get out of a client and then try to optimize its acquisition process.

I'd happy to share more with you if you want.


In my point of view, franchise is mainly a matter of being able to operate the kiosk network by yourself or not. You know better than anyone your capacity of managing those kiosks and it all depends on your vision about this business. It is not a black or white answer, you will probably end up doing both (self own kiosks and franchised kiosks)

Having a franchise enables your concept to grow faster but you get potentially less control. Usually companies start a franchise when they reach the limit of their organisation structure to absorb growth.

This means that it is useful when there is a initial demand, prove first that you have a nice market at home otherwise you will have issues finding people ready to start your franchise concept in their own country.

Personally, I have always found harder to finance and than creating opportunity.
It is quite "easy" (once you have the right value proposition and target customers) to sell but getting paid is way more difficult. Most small business are dying not because they are not selling, but because they are not getting paid early for their work and finally lacking liquidity for their operations.

So funding is a bit like getting paid in advance.

What we usually do is split the total bill in bits to be paid out gradually based on progress and well defined target.

I have seen your situation before with other customers. What they did was to start developing the product with the budget they had focusing on the most interesting part and then they went with this half finished but functional product to pitch investors. And this how they got the missing part of the funding.

To help you with this, look at the offers on Box's website. There would be a sales support team for general questions and getting quotes and is basically the online sales.

However, based on my experience, the biggest sales activity is probably focused on Business for the integration of Box within a company's infrastructure. This is what will generate the highest margin. This clearly a job on the field, being in contact with the companies day to day.

I think you should first determine some area to help people focus on specific subject. If you ask people what are your problems ? Most of them won't be able to answer you.

If you propose some context, it easier for people to provide feedback. For example, you could ask, is there something that bothers you all the time in the metro? If yes, tell us more about it. If no, is there another place where something particular is bothering you?

One way of determining those situation and target groups of people would be to crawl forums/groups where there are tons of people complaining about their problems. List those issues and try to get more feedback from those people ! This is how Airbnb got started by the way...

Actually, you don't really have the choice unless you start to learn coding.

You have to understand that alone you won't be able to do much to succeed in your business. Therefore you have to give away some share of your idea. An idea is worth nothing until it becomes reality.

Don't forget that in this world, you are not the only having this idea. The difference comes from what you make out of it.

Smartphones and Tablets existed before the iPhone and iPad came in. There were many social networks already in place when Facebook took off.

I hope this small advice will help you somehow...

Before starting anything I would start answering the following questions and make sure the answers don't come from you (or an assumption) but from the niche:
1) Is there a need from the niche to have a Quora like service?
2) What value would this bring for the niche? (Think of what your users' objective is and how your service would help them)
3) How Quora lacks in serving this niche? (What are the main defaults of Quora for your niche) Perhaps to many question, not well organized,...

If you are building a Quora like, you should not copy Quora but emphasize your differences with Quora so it brings the full value to your niche.

You should also aim at building a core competence that will differenciate your service from Quora on the long term. What if Quora decides suddenly to build a similar service to yours? What will make your service better than Quora anyway?

Those answers will not come straight away but you should keep them in mind along your business design process.

When building a platform or a market, you need to understand which side is going to pay for your service. They will be probably the hardest to convince and therefore you need to get traction and create a critical mass with the free population.

To get that traction you have to gather info about the potential interest of the non paying side to participate into your platform. Usually people are always ready to subscribe if it is free and if it meets potentially their needs.

How many free subscribers have you managed to get through your landing page ?
If there is still lack of subscribers, try to analyse what are the most wanted lessons by your user so you can start, so you can show lessons providers there is a public for them.

Another way of getting traction is to start with a result based pricing so lessons provider will have to pay for your service only if there is a minimum number of participants.

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