One of my business partners recently sent me a link to an exciting Startup CustDev Experiment blog, namely Customer Development Labs.
They label themselves as “just a blog, not consultants”, but the kind of practical case studies and tips they provide makes it worth a quick peek. It is a great idea to actually provide examples and experiences by accompanying startups during their “out of the building” process and I might adapt their great idea at some point in the near future.
CASE STUDY SUMMARY – NAMING
As a quick summary, after coming up with 3 suggestions in-house, they created an audio(!) aided survey with nsurvey (an open source survey tool) to test memorability, spellability & hearability and such.
Then, they decided to outsource the “dirty part of surveys” by paying for respondents on Mechanical Turk. This seems to be an Amazon service where you can pay people for completing “Human Intelligence Tasks”.
I looked at some of the tasks allocated to people and the reward makes it seem like a virtual sweatshop, but you never know, it seems to work in some way…
I have never tried it as a recruitment source and have some worries about the diversity of segments on this apparently niche site (it looks way too dull and/or too sophisticated for some consumers), but for “general” issues like hearbility/memorability, it might indeed work.
Cust Dev Labs also state that they got around 50 responses for 5 bucks, which is a bargain. For other issues where certain segments will probably not be present on such special sites, I still recommend using other resources, too.
Creating this quick research helped the company “pivot” their initial rock-solid name idea and pick another one.
This was one of their stories – if you got interested, it might be worth to check their experiments out in more depth.