I’d been using business models for a few years in various startups and they were incredibly useful. One of the things I often found was that with talk and time an idea got pretty blurry and could often get obscured. A business model canvas made it really clear what was important – and it always provided a touchstone to come back to in discussions.
Are we doing this? Or are we pivoting?
That worked because it was pretty powerful and left little room for ambiguity. The business model canvas leaves enough room for working out the details but provides enough structure to keep things on course. And of course it’s easy for everyone to understand. You can normally show anyone in any company a canvas and they get it pretty quick and then understand their role in the company’s success a lot better.
I also found it a huge amount of fun trying using it to understand how companies work and what they can do to be disruptive of increase their competitive advantage. That last one is important to me as I spent a decade trying to sell something for which competitive advantage was almost impossible. More of that in a later blog post.
So I did business model canvases for a few friends. Then someone mentioned Fiverr – and I posted a gig there and soon found myself a top seller with my business model canvas. I think that part of that was because it was priced so cheap and the output offered incredible value and people said so. The more important part was that it brought clarity to people as they struggled to turn their idea into a business.
Hundreds of people got the advantage of me looking at what they were thinking and getting to the heart of the matter. That made a big difference to them. The extra money from Fiverr was nice as well 😉 It also charged 20% commission….
So when Leander reached out to me and we discovered that we both shared a passion for business mode, the canvas and startups it was like – well there’s a market out there, people love our insight why don’t we get out there and see what we can make of it.
That’s how it all started.
The big picture is that there are a bunch of tools that entrepreneurs need and use. Like most tools they are only as good as the user. The first time you pick up a hammer you bang your thumb or bend a nail. After you’ve picked it up 10,000 times you make it look so easy.
That’s the insight that we have. We’ve done a lot of canvases and so we can deliver a high quality canvas quickly and at low cost. That then gives our customers a huge boost in their startup journey
So this is one of the early models that we drew up about how it was going to work. It’s movedon a bit since then as we’ve understood the business a bit more. At it’s heart it is very simple – we want to deliver high quality business models to the people who need them most and help them use them to transform businesses and lives.