I have an idea and talked to about 14 people who have all said it's a good to great idea.
Based on this positive feedback, I have built (in about a week) a very primitive semi-working prototype that demonstrates at least what I think the idea could be. I want to use this prototype to test whether or not people like the idea or not; and to modify it based on their feedback.
I see from what I've built that the idea could go in many different tangents, including throwing away everything that I've done, and starting in a different direction; the pivot. At a minimum it's a platform to initiate a conversation.
Several questions come to mind.
First is, how many people should I talk to? One said a dozen is a good sample size, but is it?
Second is, of the people I talk to, how do I tell the difference between the early adopters and the customers? Is it nothing more than "show me when it's done" vs. "that's interesting, I'd buy it, but you could do it this way". Or is there a more rudimentary strategy?
Third is, what if the opinions of the people i talk to all vary so much that I cannot hone down anything with what I have. Is that a pivot point? -- because I fundamentally cannot validate my tests; with the work I've done. At that point, do I only deliver the thing that is most in common with all of them? In other words, to I keep looking for those who agree or use whom I've talked to as the "pulse" of the market I'm trying to target? It kind of goes back to question #1.
Thanks, - El