Stage 2: Use-Inspired Research
The Use-Inspired Research stage provides an opportunity to test your understanding of the market you are about to enter. Through direct communication with potential customers and industry leaders you will gain clearer insight into the problem you seek to address as well as the efficacy of your proposed solution. By analyzing the competitive landscape, you will learn who your competitors are, understand their strengths and weaknesses, and discover your advantage, that is, how to differentiate your venture from the rest.
Questions to answer: Who are my customers? What do they want to buy?
CRI wants to help our inventors-founders with their early stage commercial validation effort. Provide us with additional information on the proposed venture, such as preliminary descriptions of minimum viable product, business model, revenue plan, go-to-market plan and timeline, preliminary fundraising strategy, team.
Northeastern university has a number of on-campus resources for entrepreneurs. CRI is here to make introductions, to the Venture Mentoring Network, Health Sciences Entrepreneur, IDEA Venture Accelerator, Research Enterprise Services (for Conflict of Interest discussions), and the I-Corps Site.
NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps) Sites are NSF-funded entities established at universities whose purpose is to nurture and support multiple, local teams to transition their technology concepts into the marketplace. To facilitate entrepreneurship, Northeastern offers an I-Corps Sites program to it’s entrepreneurs. The program includes a series of entrepreneurship courses for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as an on-campus incubator feeding ventures into the local investment community.
An important step in early stage business development is market research. The best market research is conducted over the phone, not on the web. A rigorous customer discovery campaign in the beginning stages of launching a business will inform product-market fit and commercial strategy. CRI can provide support around this customer discovery effort, by prospecting for high-quality industry contacts to reach out to, and assistance in crafting outreach emails and questions to prepare ahead of phone interviews.
After you submit your Accell360 Questionnaire, send a customer discovery interview request via the email linked below in order to start a planning thread with CRI.