As technology affects every one of our industries and our daily lives, the education sector has not been an exception. Education Technology, or EdTech as it is also known, is a term that refers to the deployment of technology in order to impart education. For 15 years now, entrepreneurs have been developing major, technology-based solutions to problems in the education industry. In the coming decades, we are sure to see innumerable attempts at realizing the potential of EdTech. Anyone who is interested in being one of those entrepreneurs would do well to remember the following points…
You need to know your niche
The education sector is far too vast to be catered to by a single technology solution. Every EdTech entrepreneur’s first step must be to identify their “solution statement”, clearly suggesting their niche and the exact problem that they intend to solve.
You need to maintain clarity within the organization
This point is actually vital for all startups. From the firm’s inception, each of the co-founders must be clear on their responsibilities, respective equity shares, and the company’s vision. Entrepreneurs who try to avoid discussing such “uncomfortable” topics, always find them causing serious complications at crucial growth junctures.
You must secure high-quality content
Many EdTech firms face challenges because their founders do not understand just how important the educational content is. Unless the educational content is good, the quality of the software will not matter. An EdTech’s firm’s success is directly tied to the quality of its educational content.
You must maintain a solid technology team
Academicians who wish to get their knowledge to a wider audience, through EdTech, must make it a priority to secure a stable technology team. This team can be in-house, a vendor, or a technology partner. Having such a team is important because the technology, at the core of the firm, will require constant upkeep.
You should choose “progress” over “perfection”
The final version of a successful product is rarely the first one. Once you roll out your product, you will be able to develop new ideas and then implement them via product updates. This is why it is preferable to go-to-market early, with a simple product.
You must put your product through beta testing
No matter how rigorous your internal testing is, some bugs will slip through. This is why, once your testing team has declared the product to be bug-free, you must also put it through a rigorous round of beta testing. This will not only catch any bugs that were missed, but it will also tell you how well-liked the product is.
You need a marketing plan that will get you to “critical volume”
“Critical volume” refers to the number of licenses sold that will get the ball rolling on sales. You will have to budget for marketing, wisely. The budget should be spread out, across multiple streams. Set small milestones and keep revisiting the sales, to adapt to new circumstances.
You must include ample feedback and problem reporting options
Make it easy for users to give feedback and respond to all of it. Doing so will encourage the users to spread the word, about your product.
Crucial: Aim for profitability
Your firm must exist to be profitable, not merely attract funding. Ignore the chatter about “who rose how much”. Once you have proven your firm’s potential to earn profits, securing funding will be no issue.