Startup Glossary

Runway

Not as glamorous as planes and supermodels, but still a very important track in the livelihood of any startup. 
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Elevator pitch

If you only had 30 seconds, would you be able to present your idea or a product?
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Buyer persona

A buyer persona is a semi-fictional, researched-based representation of an ideal customer or target audience. It is not a real customer, but a profile depicting all the characteristics of an ideal, potential customer.
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Burn rate

What is a burn rate? How can you calculate it? What type of burn rate are investors interested in?
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Angel investor

Promising businesses often need a boost in which case they turn to angel investors.
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Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is an investment strategy whereby the investee aims to receive investments from a large number of individuals, rather than a smaller group of higher-stake investors.
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Problem-founder fit

‍Problem-founder fit is a concept inspired by Paul Graham’s blog “How to get startup ideas?” that goes agains the conventional wisdom of relying on industry experience when assessing founder’s chances of success with a new venture.
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Exit

The method by which a venture capitalist or business owner intends to get out of an investment that he or she has made in the past. In other words, the exit strategy is a way of “cashing out” an investment.
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Wizard of OZ MVP

A customer validation technique, one of high-fidelity types of MVPs, whereby the product team builds an illusion of a product but with key functionality carried out by a human (or 3rd party service), in order to validate it with real customers at low-cost and high velocity. Use it for testing a specific solution hypothesis by simulating the user experience of the actual intended product as accurately as possible, but accept that the customers will be faced with a slight time delay since a human cannot react as fast as a computer.
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Value proposition

A value proposition tells your customers why they should do business with you rather than your competitors, and makes the benefits of your products or services crystal clear from the outset. It is the intermediary between your customer and your product and is a way of explaining why your customers should care for the product that you’re building and what makes this product relevant to them today. So, value proposition doesn’t exist without understanding your customer segment. It is fundamentally a statement about satisfying a customer need - and not just about a “good” product idea. 
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