Introduction to How to Build a Startup

In an introduction to the basics of the famous Customer Development Process, Steve Blank provides an insight into the key tools and steps needed to build a successful startup.

The key idea in this course is learning how to rapidly develop and test ideas by gathering massive amounts of customer and marketplace feedback. Many startups fail by not validating their ideas early on with real-life customers. Students will learn to "get out of the building" to talk to real customers to find out what they actually want, not what founders think they want.

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Course Resources

Additional Reading

  1. Students and Teams blogging their progress

  2. Progression plan: Track your startup's progress with these tools

  3. Although not required, it is advised that you follow the course using Business Model Generation Book and Startup Owner’s Manual Book. Here are the specific pages you should focus on: Pages.

Student generated content

Discussion groups elsewhere:

  • There is an idea to create a social entrepreneurship facebook group on the discussion boards that seems to be getting traction but hasn't materialised yet.

Students and Teams blogging their progress:

Progression plan:

Track your startup's progress with these tools

Secret Notes For Instructors and Coaches

Detailed notes for Instructors and Coaches interested in using this course to teach their Startup Class can be found here: Notes for Instructors and Coaches

Downloadable Materials

You can download Supplemental Materials, Lesson Videos and Transcripts from Downloadables (bottom right corner of the Classroom) or from the Dashboard (first option on the navigation bar on the left hand side).

Course Syllabus

Lesson 0: Before You Get Started

The characteristics of a world class Entrepreneur and the Business Model Canvas

Lesson 1: What we Now Know

  • History of the Corporation
  • Startups Are Not Smaller Versions of Large Companies
  • Waterfall Development
  • Customer vs. Product Development
  • Entrepreneurial Education

Lesson 1.5 A and B: Business Models and Customer Development

  • Value Proposition
  • Customer Segments
  • Revenue Streams
  • Key Resources
  • Customer Development Processes
  • Minimum Viable Product
  • Market Opportunity Analysis

Lesson 2: Value Proposition

  • Value Proposition and the Minimum Viable Product
  • Customer Archetype
  • MVP Physical && Web/Mobile
  • Common Mistakes With Value Proposition

Lesson 3: Customer Segments

  • Product Market Fit
  • Rank and Day in the Life
  • Multiple Customer Segments
  • Market Types Introduction: Existing, Resegmented, New, Clone
  • Consequences of Not Understanding a Market

Lesson 4: Channels

  • Distribution Channels Overview
  • Web Distribution
  • Physical Distribution
  • Direct Channel Fit
  • Indirect Channel Economics
  • OEM Channel Economics

Lesson 5: Customer Relationships

  • Paid Demand Creation
  • Earned Demand Creation
  • Get Physical
  • Viral Loop
  • Web Customer Acquisition Costs

Lesson 6: Revenue Model

  • How Do You Make Money
  • Revenue Streams and Price
  • Direct and Ancillary Models
  • Common Startup Mistakes
  • Market Types and Pricing
  • Single and Multiple Side Markets
  • Revenue First Companies
  • Market Size and Share

Lesson 7: Partners

  • Partner Definition
  • Partner Resources
  • Partner Types
  • Greatest Strategic Alliance
  • Joint Business Development

Lesson 8: Resources, Activities and Costs

Four Critical Resources

  • Financial Resources
  • Human Resources
  • Qualified Employees and Culture
  • Intellectual Property Overview

  • LinkedIn Group. Like to connect at Linkedin? Go to the "Udacity Lean LaunchPad" group. (Created by one of the students). Udacity Lean LaunchPad LinkedIn Group

  • International Facebook Group for the course at Facebook Group

  • An (as yet) Unofficial G+ Page for the course at G+ Page. If this is useful, it would be ideal to share the page Manager role with course admins. Let's use this for Hangouts and events around the Business Model Canvas.

  • Google map for the Startup Teams and Students Google Map