The fundamentals of starting an EdTech firm

mm Paul Verbiton November 30, 2018
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Starting an EdTech Firm

The following article has been inspired by the thoughts of Mr. Mayank Srivastava. He is the Founder of Experts’ Global, one of the world’s leading EdTech firms in the field of GMAT prep and MBA admission consulting.

In today’s world, there is no industry or, in fact, any part of our daily lives that has not been touched by technology and education has been no different. In fact, there is a specific term for the usage of EdTech in education. That term is Education Technology, also referred to as EdTech. EdTech is a booming field, with a number of entrepreneurs making significant contributions to it, over the last 15 years. In the near future, we are sure to see many more entrepreneurs rolling out EdTech solutions. Any such individuals would do well to understand these fundamentals, before establishing their EdTech firms.

Understanding the Niche

The education sector is so vast that no one single firm’s solutions cannot cater to it all. Before doing anything else, an aspiring EdTech entrepreneur needs to understand their “solution statement”, the exact problem that they intend to solve.

Clearing out the ‘Uncomfortable’ details

Each of the firm’s cofounders must be clear on the company’s core vision. They also need to be clear on their roles, degree of involvement and equity shares. Establishing clarity on these matters is crucial for avoiding complications at vital stages in organizational growth.

Having High-Quality Content

Many tech entrepreneurs, who branch out into the EdTech industry, underestimate how important it is to have high-quality academic content. That content will be at the core of any EdTech company. No matter how good the technology is, poor-quality educational content will hold the firm back.

Securing a Good Technology Team

Technology is, obviously, a key part of an EdTech firm’s work. Someone who is approaching EdTech, as an academic or an educator, will need to have a reliable technology team to deal with development and upkeep. Whether through a technology partner, a vendor or developing it in-house having such a team is essential.

Starting Simple

There is no such thing as a perfect product, the first version of the product will not be its final version. All technology products undergo an evolution after they have been launched. This is why it is better to not elongate the go-live and launch a simple product. Once the product has been on the market, for a while, you will have learned what additional features the product needs and can update the product with them.

Beta Testing

Even the best testing teams will miss some bugs. That is why it is important to put the product through a round of beta testing, once internal testing has declared it to be bug-free. This will catch the bugs and deliver broad feedback on how well the users like the product.

Marketing

The firm must have a solid, well-budgeted marketing plan for the product. The budget should be split across multiple venues, not concentrated in one field. This plan needs to be geared towards securing “critical volume”- the number of licenses sold that will effectively increase awareness, of the product.

Feedback

The software must have avenues for feedback and problem reporting, at all critical points. All types of feedback must be readily embraced, so as to establish a positive relationship with the users.

Important: Aim for Profitability

Any successful firm, EdTech or otherwise, is built on an inspiration for developing a profitable enterprise. Focus on doing this, not just generating funding. Funding will naturally follow profitability.

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Paul Verbiton

I enjoy spotting opportunities and doing my best to grab them if I can. I am eager to see the world, I love taking photos and writing, coming up with topics that are pleasant to read, funny, and interesting at the same time.

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