Continue to think of different solutions, build your first prototypes & test them. “Fake it until you make it”

– you will find out how you can easily test your approaches with your target groups without having to spend a lot of time, money, and energy.


Template: Idea Grid

The idea grid is used when your ideas focus on the same subject areas and you are looking for a method that broadens your horizons. This tool is all about divergent thinking. How you fill the individual fields of the ideas grid is entirely up to you.

Template: Evaluation Matrix

The evaluation matrix (source: Dark Horse Innovation) helps you to select the most promising from the wealth of ideas.The goal is to contrast the different ideas. For it to succeed, you make an assessment for each idea in terms of added value, transferability and feasibility. These criteria will help you choose your ideas for the following prototyping phase.

Template: Value Proposition Canvas (VPC)

The Value Proposition Canvas (VPC) helps you to derive exciting possible solutions from the problems and needs of your customers that create effective added value for the customers (Value Proposition). Use the VPC both to generate possible solutions and to validate your existing solution approaches. You can find out how to use the VPC here.

Template: Target Journey

A target journey helps you to shows the customer’s “journey” in its entirety and to identify the critical aspects of this journey.

Template: Customer Journey

The customer journey goes into more detail than the short target journey. In addition to the customer, you also draw the processes of other stakeholders, their points of contact and an emotion curve. (Credits: Prof. Dr. Patrick Link

Template: Test & Learning Cards

The test card is helpful when it comes to formulating hypotheses and considering how these can be verified. With the Learning Card you can systematically record your findings and show the resulting decisions and actions.

Overview: Introducing Prototyping

Why Prototyping?

-give your idea shape

-start a conversation

-test different variations

-make mistakes quickly & learn from them

Overview: Different Prototypes

No matter what kind of idea you are pursuing, a prototype helps you to test and develop it in the real world and, above all, with real customers. A prototype gives your idea an initial form and helps you to review critical aspects or assumptions of your idea and to get feedback on your idea. The easier, cheaper and faster you start with a first vision of your idea, the less it will hurt you to change it based on the feedback.

Overview: Different Test Setups

Prototype is the «What» – the haptic or visualized form of your product or service.

Test setup is the «How,» which determines in which way you are going to make your prototype available to potential customers.

The development of the entire test scenario depends on what you want to find out. Ask yourself the following questions and then decide on the appropriate test setup: What do you want to find out or learn? Where do you find your target group and how can you best get feedback on your idea?

Example: Dropbox

A famous example is Dropbox. The enterprise tested the interest of their customers with a simple 3-minutes video, which showed the problems with synchronizing and saving data and its unique solution to the problem. After a couple of blog posts, the video went viral, and dropbox thereby validated the interest in the solution. At the same time, the team had access to numerous users, who could potentially be converted into customers.

Best Practice

Inside an Entrepreneur’s Mind: Lisa Falco

Bluelion regularly interviews entrepreneurs on their founding journey. Watch this interview with Lisa Falco, Head of Product at Pipra.

Among other topics, this episode focuses on

  • Prototyping in Healthcare – 19:34
  • Stakeholder Interviews – 22:25

Related Articles

Process Guide: Business Model

Topic Guide: Prototyping