The Cold Start Problem for Products

David Cummings on Startups

Recently I was talking to an entrepreneur about his Software-as-a-Service company and he was excited that this new company didn’t suffer from the cold start problem he had previously. Not having heard this term before, I asked him to explain it to me. The cold start problem is when someone tries out a new product, like an accounting system, and there’s little real work they can do until significant integration is done (chart of accounts, import data, etc). Other products, like Rigor’s web performance management system, don’t have a cold start problem because you can turn it on and start getting value right away.

Here are a few ideas to consider if you have a cold start problem:

  • Include high quality demo or test data so that users can experience something of meaning without doing a big integration
  • Consider having client implementation coordinators on-board new customers to ensure that…

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