The Business Model Canvas’s chief virtue is its transparency, and that transparency helps create focus. That said, to create a meaningful and worthwhile take on the Canvas, you want some depth. Here we’ll walk through 3 steps that will help you dig deep into what your business is about and how to frame that using the Canvas.
What is the Canvas
The Business Model Canvas is a tool for articulating and innovating business models. It has the nine blocks shown below. You can probably sit down right now and fill out a version of it for your business.
If you’re prefer something printable, here’s a PDF.
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There’s no denying that a master’s degree in business administration has cachet. Too bad that cachet takes a few years to achieve, comes with a hefty price tag and, these days, offers no job guarantees. Wouldn’t it be a nicer route to become a master of business through interesting career moves and investments, personal connections, great talks, classes and events, and a handful of enlightening business books?
Let’s start with the books. We’ve broken down 10 MBA lessons, and for each one there is a corresponding must-read book. Call it business school in 10 books. It won’t earn you an MBA, but it will give you an education in business.
Related Story: 10 Books To Read Before Pitching Your Startup
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With the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reporting the creation of a projected 20.5 million new jobs between 2010 and 2020, there’s never been a better time to brush up your skillset, dust off your resume, and find the perfect career. But the unique needs of technology-driven commerce dictate that certain skills will naturally have greater value than others. If you focus your effort on the areas that promise the greatest dividends, you’ll likely be rewarded with a handsome payout. Continue reading
A company enters a market, releases a new product and makes tens of millions of dollars. Meanwhile, a stand-up comedian walks on stage, opens her mouth and brings an audience to tears. So, who has the harder job, the stand-up comedian or the company CEO? Who has more to lose? Is it scarier being in front of 500 people and dying on stage, or releasing a product that dies in the market?
Pricing a product is a highly important yet deceptively tricky task. Highly important because it can determine how well your product performs on the market, thus laying the foundation for your business’s success. Deceptively tricky because while you might think you have enough experience as a consumer to come up with an appropriate number, the truth is that pricing a product requires a lot more than market comparisons and a hunch.
So what does it take to figure out your product’s worth? Let’s take a look.
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As with the Mommy Wars and the Cola Wars, sometimes the media is compelled to draw battle lines where none are needed. The latest skirmish might be called the Click Wars. In one corner we have search engine optimization. In the other corner we have social media. Which is the more important digital marketing tool?
A minimum viable product, or MVP, is a bare-bones test of user interest in a product. The commonly accepted definition comes from Eric Reis, who popularized the term in his book The Lean Startup: “The minimum viable product is that version of a new product which allows a team to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least effort.”
One of the first things a startup should build is a library. Business books can help hone or disrupt your way of thinking (sometimes in ways that are subtle, sometimes in thunderclaps), they can help you learn from examples and case studies, and they keep you up with the latest jargon at pitch meetings and cocktail parties. Of course, new books come out all the time, and everyone has their personal favorites, but these essential titles should help you fill your startup library.
Related Story: Considering Business School? Read These 10 Books Instead
Not a day goes by in the business world without buzz words being exchanged. Let’s lay the ground work with financial modeling.
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