A buyer advisory board (CAB) might be a useful useful resource for startups, however many founders wrestle with placing collectively the appropriate group of advisors and tips on how to incentivize them. At our TechCrunch Early Stage occasion, Saam Motamedi, a common companion at Greylock Companions, talked about how he thinks about placing collectively the appropriate CAB.
“We encourage all of our early-stage firms to place this in place,” Motamedi stated. The purpose right here is to hurry up the method to get to product/market match since your CAB will give you common suggestions.
“The thought right here is [that] you could have this suggestions loop from clients again to your product the place you construct, you go get suggestions, you iterate — and the tighter this suggestions loop is, the quicker you’ll get to product-market match. And also you wish to do issues structurally to make this suggestions loop tighter, beginning with a CAB.”
Motamedi stated a CAB ought to include about three to 6 clients. These ought to be “luminaries or ahead thinkers” out there you’re serving. “You add them to the CAB — you would possibly give them small advisory grants — and so they turn into stakeholders and provide you with suggestions as you’re employed by way of the early phases of product improvement.”
As for the individuals who you placed on the CAB, Motamedi suggests first setting the appropriate expectations for the board.
“There are three elements. Primary, probably the most useful factor you will get from these buyer advisors is their time. So the primary piece is you need them to decide to a month-to-month cadence, that may very well be 60 minutes, it may very well be 90 minutes, the place you’re going to say, ‘Hey, I’m going to come back to the assembly, I’m going to deliver two of my teammates, we’re going to indicate you the newest product demo, and also you’re going to drill us with suggestions. We’re going to do this as soon as a month.’ […] After which piece two is that this notion of buyer days, you might do quarterly, you might additionally do twice a 12 months.
“The thought is you wish to deliver the shoppers collectively. As a result of should you and I are each CIOs at Fortune 500 firms and we independently react to a product, that’s one factor, but when we sit in a room collectively, all of us have a look at the product collectively, there’s going to be attention-grabbing knowledge amongst us as clients and the founder goes to study quite a bit from that.[…] And I feel the third piece is simply an expectation that as the corporate progresses and product maturity will increase, that people on the CAB are going to be advocates and evangelists for the corporate with their buyer networks.”
Motamedi recommends outlining these expectations in a brief doc.