I'm a first-time entrepreneur and I've come across a few problems and solved them. I'm dealing with a certain couple of problems now that I'm not sure how to solve. Before I ask my questions, let me give a brief history of my progress. I feel like if I come at this from the "big-picture" angle I'll probably get more intelligent answers.
At first I was trying to build a business on my own but I realized that was a mistake. My problem was that I needed a business partner. Now I have a business partner to help bear the load of undertaking the task of starting a business.
I also didn't have anything that I felt was a decent business idea. Now I have one: software for salons. It might seem odd that I think that's my best idea - it's clearly not a "silver bullet" type of idea, but just go with me on this one. I haven't started actually designing or building the software yet, just so you know.
I have one customer right now. (The customer came before the business idea.) This salon is unhappy with their current software and there don't seem to be any acceptable competitors out there. Since I'm 100% confident I can develop something that's not a bloated, outdated, intimidating, Microsoftey hunk of flaming garbage, I'm confident that this is a good business idea.
Now, my questions are:
Should I try to find one or two more customers who can help me see the product from a couple different angles, so I end up with a piece of software any salon could use, so I don't end up with a product that just solves person's problem excellently but no one else's? Or should I focus on my sole customer and wait until the product is "done" to turn to other customers?
How can I deal with the fact that the salon depends on the crappy software it uses now (Salon Iris)? They don't like Salon Iris but they do depend on it. It seems to me that the only way to deal with this is to create a product that does just barely what it needs to do, then "flip the switch," then work on improving my product from that point on. Otherwise I'll be working on something until 2015, and I won't even know if it solves the right problems. Any advice here is appreciated.