Listening to a webinar hosted by David Bland and Alex Osterwalder on the topic of testing business ideas they discussed the relative value of the idea and evidence that a business model will build a successful company. Too often the focus is placed on the idea rather than evidence that the product or service – or the business itself – will be profitable. It is the same for public relations and marketing – too often the focus is on the tactical activity rather than evidence it is delivering the desired commercially-valuable outcome.
If startups and small businesses, or more established organizations for that matter, asked for tangible evidence that their efforts would deliver a commercially-valuable outcome they may not be as willing to part with the expensive retainer fees demanded by traditional agencies.
But evidence shouldn’t only be used as a way to quantify the ultimate value of a strategies – it should also be used to build and validate them incrementally. Each step of the strategy should be developed as a hypothesis, tested through experimentation and iterated based on hard evidence.