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					               Company   Website Describing Company
Virgin Airlines          Startup-in-any-industry
Virgin Airlines          tcm4-426059.pdf
DuckDuckGo               Startup-in-any-industry
DuckDuckGo               duckduckgo-awesome
Twitter                  Startup-in-any-industry

Groupon                  2011-10?op=1
FaceBook                 founded-2010-3

Instapaper               73/the-tuesday-podcast-the-app-economy

Yahoo          !


Apple iPhone   


Fliggo                   it
Grockit                          patterns

Semiconductor (xompany Name not
given)                          product#comment-8057

Web Application (company name
not given)                       %20Study%20One


ManyWheels                       market-risk-with-microsoft-visio/


Baking For Good


Toutapp           05/tech/30476920_1_emails-iphone-app-gmail



Dropbox                  minimum-viable-product/

Spool                    minimum-viable-product/

Cars Direct              viable-product-mvp/

TPGTEX Label Solutions   bootstrappers-guide-to-launching-new-products.html

EngineKites              launchpad-presentations-part-1-of-2/
Sync                launchpad-presentations-part-1-of-2/

Nudge/Dynamo        launchpad-presentations-part-1-of-2/


ColorWheels         launchpad-presentations-part-1-of-2/

ParkPoint Capital   presentation

DentalOptics        launchpad-presentations-part-2-of-2/

MiCasa              launchpad-presentations-part-2-of-2/
ZiiLion                     launchpad-presentations-part-2-of-2/  





One Kings Lane              the-lax-arrivals-terminal-to-200m-in-revenue/

The Balanced Entrepreneur
The Balanced Entrepreneur

                            viable-products-that-made-it-big-                    9397834?from=ss_embed

Readmill                    encounter-makes-them-launch-early-2/
          Service or Product Provided


See description above

Search Engine

See description above

Social Networking

Coupons / Retail / Sales

Social Networking

Internet site bookmarking service

Search Engine

Organization App
Project Management Software


Social Networking

Video upload/sharing site
Online Learning / Education

Semi Conductor

Web Application

Project Management Software

Web Development
Online Picture/Video Sharing

Office supply discount service for small

Online Entrepreneurial Resource

Bakery/Online retail/donation to charities

A live chat app

Momentomail and Wormwall

Create playlists of Youtube videos
See description above

Track emails after you send them if they were
viewed, clicked, opened

See description above

Develop a Launch Site for your website to
create interest and gauge demand
See description above
instant SMS voting on any topic

Track personal finances and control your
spending by email
See description above

Create websites or apps and publish to Google's
free hosting service

Cloud-based backup and file saving service
across users
See description above

Save articles and videos for later offline

See description above

Online Car sales

Software company specializing in barcodes and
labels for manufacturers

A kiteboarding startup in California
"Simplifying communications and intimately
connecting couples' lives for healthier

Ultimately "nudge to enrich life", reminders of
activities or events. This company went through
many pivots: travel booking portal for Middle
Easterners, Social travel planning, Ex Pat travel
portal to Middle East. Safe travel portal for
Americans to the Middle East, Travel inspiration
to nudge people to enrich their lives, Nudge to
enrich life

"There are a ton of high school athletes who
could benefit from top-notch off-field training
programs, and very few with access to them.
Cutting-edge workout programs to high school
athletes at minimal cost."

"Getting girls engaged in science and

Pivoted from a service that puts checks cashed
onto a credit card to a financial services
industry to "underbanked" individuals that are
new to the U.S. or those without a credit
history to get a credit card.

"Their journey was from a lighting solution for
dentists to an automated way to test for
periodontal disease."

House or apartment search website for
landlords and tenants.
First idea was to create a Renren (Chinese
Facebook) app that coordinates event meetings
for Chinese college students. It pivoted into a
website for coordinating events in China. Then
pivoted into a Renren app that ranks and
reviews all aspects of college life in China

Weekly trivia and humor podcast and website

Questions answered with friends' friends on
social media

See description above
Website that allows users to search zip-code
based searches on used car sales in order to get
an idea of viable pricing

Online collaborative photo book creation site

Website that sells designer homegoods and
products at deep discounts

Educational information products assisting
entrepreneurs startup lifestyle companies.
Educational information products assisting
entrepreneurs startup lifestyle companies.

Free service that is an account aggregator for
personal finances that can include bank
accounts, credit card accounts and financial

See description above
Notes and comments on e-books that can be
shared on a social network

See description above
                        Why They Are Lean

Started with a single 747 in 1984 on one route

See description above

Started with single user before launch in Sept 2008

See description above

Started with few users who introduced friends to it
Originally just a simple Wordpress blog that embedded a widget
from ThePoint and used AppleScript to send the PDF coupons via Was a pivot from the project The Point. Early months of
Groupon when a deal closed and enough customers bought
vouchers, an employee personally typed the emails every day to
customers. Only months later that they had a program to
automatically do this. Created by Andrew Mason and Eric
Mark Zuckerberg, single creator made working version before
going live
A side project of Marco Arment, one of the founders of Tumblr.
He is the only employee and has taken no outside money for the
When they launched the product was just a listing of websites
assembled by hand. It was the co-creators lists of favorite
websites assembled by hand as a side project

Simple platform to create and organize notes that share across
Side project from the company 37 Signals

First iPhone was launched without cut and paste or search ability
Launched using Google Docs to collect and store information. Still
in use. No fees, no proprietary programs
Fliggo uses a smoke test to see if users are interested in a version
that is $15
Lets users create a site for their videos. Make your own Youtube
Grockit uses a form to gauge interest with email and question
fields. In addition to a notify-me-when-it's-available form but
adds the unique twist that users can enter text in a field to answer
the question "why do you want to use our service?" On a second
page three more questions are asked - "Can our CEO contact you
to learn more about your needs?" "How are you preparing for the
LSAT today?" "Would you pay for Grockit if it meets your needs?"
Now you have the information to gain Early Evangelists
Made mock-ups of semiconductors on powerpoint and went to
customers with it and received feedback through several cycles
and brought the feedback back before even building the
prototype. Built a $100M line of semiconductors without building
a prototype

This company used pencil drawings of designs for the app,
brought it to a graphic designer and then made pictures that they
said were "screenshots" of their product. This made it seem like it
was in the works and being developed. The founders started with
friends then cold-called for interested parties. Scheduled
meetings and showed the screenshots with a walk-through on
what the functionality would be. They received feedback and
brought it back to the original idea. They asked the client what
they were using currently and how much they paid. They called on
interested clients at least twice, and sometimes three times. Each
time they brought new screenshots and received more feedback.
On the last visit they brought a Legal Non-Binding Letter of Intent
(LOI) for the client to sign that they would use the app for free IF it
met their needs and then by such and such a date IF their needs
were met they would purchase the app.

It is in beta testing currently and is free with the condition of
filling out a survey by email at most once a week

Uses Microsoft Visio to make a mock-up for discussions with
potential customers. "My experiences over the last 6 months have
reinforced what countless others have already learned: get a
mockup in front of people as soon as you possibly can. Nothing
will focus your conversations and get specific feedback like
showing people a possible solution. Moreover, it sends a message
that you’re serious, that this product is really going to be built,
and that you’re thinking critically about the problem."
Started with an idea and just let people tell him what was wrong
with current solutions or discuss what they needed and then got a
mock-up idea. Learned that he needed to let customers tell him
what they wanted instead of other way around. Couldn't use
Google Adwords, Landing page or sign up sheet because it
wouldn't get the necessary exposure or the feedback he needed.

Small businesses may sign-up as members and then get discounts
on office supplies. Bootstrapped into a startup.
Website that allows a local area search for small businesses and
mentors for entrpreneurs.
The founder saved up $40,000 as bootstrapping capital in order to
start this online bakery. Buy baked goods and ship them nationally
and 15% of net proceeds from the sale goes to a charity of your

Founder Jerome Breche started website Snap-a-bug and could not
gain a single paying customer. He then started seeking feedback
from users and found that there was one aspect that they really
liked. He then pivoted the company into SnapEngage around the
one feature and gained paying customers right away.
The first service, Momentomail started out simply as a login page
and schedule email interface to gauge interest.
It is a "Sunday night project" by the founder. Uses other software
that is already established, did not need to use proprietary
software or design. Set it up himself and launched to gauge
See description above

Founder Tawheed Kader developed a free service to show how
effective your emails are and if the recipient is reading them. It's
significantly more popular now than when it was first launched.
There are 12,000 users as of December 2011. The service is free
up to a 25 emails daily then it is $.99 for the iPhone app or
subscription to the website. It is now being integrated with the
likes of Gmail and Outlook.

See description above
The founders decided to start a launch page for launch pages
because of other viral successes and decided to try to make an
easier, streamlined process. They have been successful with this
service. There are analytics that can be used along with this
See description above
This founder launched with just the one service to gauge interest
before adding the features that he wanted to include.
The founder created this website over a weekend and had
hundreds of users. The site now has thousands of users in
multiple countries.
See description above

The founder had several friends come to him with the problem
that they had ideas for apps but not the knowledge to code them
or program software. CoderBuddy helps anyone create a website
or app for free with Google's hosting services.
The company started when an MIT student made this service for
himself because he kept forgetting to bring flashdrives to class to
save files. He decided this could be used by others and not just
him. It has since become one of the hottest startups on the
internet. Has 50 million users. Started as a video with a sign-up
See description above

The Instapaper for the offline video world, Spool’s MVP is a video
and an invite list that includes an email address box, but also a
radio box to check which kind of phone you have.

See description above
Launched in 1998 basically to see whether people would actually
pay for a car over the internet. Launched at night, the next day 4
cars had been sold. No infrastructure and no connection to a
dealership network. This is very similar to Zappos start. The
founders need only go to a dealership and take pictures and post
The company creates mocked-up webpages of products or ideas
for products then spends only a few hundred dollars in the
marketing of it and only creates the product when a customer
creates an order.

Testing the market for demand and receptivity and different
channels that can be used to break into the market. Use hotels for
booking lessons and packages, approach brands to partner with,
advertisement on websites, interviews, networking.
Created during Stanford's Lean Launch Pad Project

Went through many many pivots to arrive at a business model
that had a market, scalability, interest, demand. "they had face-to-
face interviews with 252 customers + 10 partner interviews + 76

"The number of customers touched 4,000! 147 face-to-face or
phone interviews." This team went through a few iterations of
their product and did several interviews and surveys to determine
the demand, scalability and market for their service.
"They spoke to 294 people: 69 parents, 110 kids, 6 high school
girls, 32 experts, 6 manufacturers, and surveyed an addtional 68

"Spoke face-to-face with 326 customers" went through several
pivots after interviews and market research.

Spoke face-to-face with 72 customers

They spoke to 105 customers and surveyed 98 more.
Interviewed 154 customers in China plus surveyed another 48.

Started from funding on

Started as a bare-bones idea that used Wizard of Oz style method
of functioning early on. Acquired by Google in 2010 for $50
Million - has since been discontinued.

See description above

Started as an idea for the Lean LaunchPad course at Stanford

Started as an idea and did face to face interviews to gauge market
demand and viability

Co-founders Susan Feldman and Ali Pincus started the website
during the recession with their own savings

Inexpensively tested whether products should emphasize
research findings.
Inexpensively tested whether an app which assesses venture team
compatibilty could go viral. Built prototype of app in minutes
using excel and manually assessing survey results.

Started as a launch page to sign up for service. Submitted the idea
to the TechCrunch40 Conference in 2007, and won the event

See description above

Employs 8 people. Started with seed money from a VC firm

See description above
          How Is The Customer Reached                          Action Measured

Word of mouth, media coverage of inaugural flight` Use of the airline

See description above                               See description above

Launched the website and put a release notice on
Hacker News                                         Use of the search engine

See description above                               See description above

Word of mouth, social media sites                   Registration for account

                                                    Registration for emails, purchase of
Targeted ads (such as on Facebook), emails,         coupons

Word of mouth, friends' use, email notification     Registration, account creation

Word of mouth, told friends and family, write ups
in tech papers                                      Registration for service

                                                 Use of search engine
Lauched in June of 2010, garnered 135,000 users
by the end of August and was adding 10,000 users
per day                                          Sign up for service
                                                 Sign up for service


Social media, word of mouth                         Sign up for service

                                                    Sign up for free service or sign up to
                                                    be notified when pay service is
                                                  Sign up for service

Uses facebook ads to attract traffic to website
                                                   Sign-up for the upcoming launch of
Announced a bare-bones version on the website      the service (they went from 5,000
Hacker News, video demonstration of the service    registered to 75,000 overnight after
with no coding done yet!                           video launch)
See description above                              See description above

                                                   Sign up with email address for
                                                   service to measure market demand

                                                   See description above

Website advertising, ads in industry magazines and
publications, tradeshows, free lessons at the
beach, interviews with potential customers, social
media networking. "This team spoke face-to-face
with 50+ end users, 3 manufacturers, 25 potential
partners, 22 domain experts and surveyed an
additional 115 customers. And they got to the      Lessons booked, kites sold, hotels
beach a lot."                                      partnering for packages
                                                      Click-throughs on facebook ads,
Landing page, web app, ads on facebook, "spoke        click-throughs on web ads,
face-to-face with 74 customers, 10 experts and        conversion to service, survey taken,
surveyed another 103 customers."                      web app used

Facebook ad, facebook fan page, youtube video,
website                                               Sign-up for service, leave email

Direct email, facebook search, google search,         Viewing website, registration page
google display                                        sign-up, become paying users

                                                      Sign-up for mailing list, purchase
Talking to parents, talking to experts, landing pages product, view website

Stanford student network, Campus Capital
Network (Stanford organization), interviews, trial
website, international (web) forums, targeted
advertisements (such as on Facebook),                 Sign-ups for service

Face to face interviews with dentists and
professionals                                         Interest in ordering product

LinkdIn, Meetup, Craigs List emails, Craigs List ads,
Ad Words, targeted advertisements on facebook, Registration on website
Online survey on, phone call to current Sign-up for this app, businesses in
Chinese college students, face to face interview   China near colleges pay for the
with new Chinese students at Stanford              advertisements

                                                     Create enough funding for the
                                                     launch of the website and podcast

                                                     Use of service

                                                     See description above

Interviews with 700 Stanford students                Use of website

Interviews with high school staff that worked on
yearbooks, pivoted into any sort of photo book for
any occasion. Face to face interviews with         Interest in idea and use of website
prospective customers and venture capitalists      (registration)

Began by sending an email of the URL to the
subscribers of the daily email service Daily Candy
to expand user base                                  Registration on website

Facebook ads                                         Click-throughs on facebook ad
                                                  Completing five questions (final app
                                                  would have over a dozen)
Post on Individuals' face book page               Supplying friends' e-mail addresses

Created a blog with 200 articles about personal
finance before website was launched, publicity
from winning the TechCrunch40 Conference,
tradeshows, media coverage                        Register for website, service

See description above                             See description above

                                                  Subscription to service

                                                  See description above
         How Is The Product Represented

1 Boeing 747

See description above

Online, website

See description above

Online, website

Online, website

Online, website

Online, website

Online, website

Online, website, mobile app
Online, website

Physical product

Online, website, mobile app

Online, website
Online, website
MVP website that continued to make iterations as
feedback from users came in
See description above

A video demonstration and invite list (landing page)

See description above

Prototype of product, computer design
Landing page, web app, prototype

Website, youtube video

Written description, website, videos (on website)

Video, written description, website

Website, written description

Physical prototype (made of clay and LED light)

Created a MVP webpage for testing,
MVP app uploaded to, created a fan
page on, and spam news feed on,
A posting on
became a website and a podcast
MVP website that used Wizard of Oz style method
to gain feedback and information from the market
before investing more money into a viable

See description above

MVP website

Online, website

Website, pictures online

Competing facebook ads, one emphasing research,
one not.
Using very simple proto-type of app --namely a
survey, and manually assessing results.

Started as landing page, became website

See description above

Website, mobile application

See description above

Pivoted from a company called "The Point" that was designed
to get groups of people together to solve problems.

Essentially pivoted from a kind of "yellow pages" for the
internet with listings of websites.
Pivoted from Snap-a-bug, a customer relations management
program that had live chat in it. The live chat became the only
popular aspect, so the founder pivoted into an all live chat
This team won "most pivots" in the Stanford Lean Launch
Project. The pivots were; 1) travel booking portal for Middle
Easterners, 2) Social travel planning, 3) Ex Pat travel portal to
Middle East, 4) Safe travel portal for Americans to the Middle
East, 5) Travel inspiration to nudge people to enrich their
lives, 6) Nudge to enrich life

Original platform was a customized workout platform for
athletes in high school age range.

Pivoted from a service that puts checks cashed onto a credit
card to a financial services industry to "underbanked"
individuals that are new to the U.S. or those without a credit
history to get a credit card.

Pivoted from an LED lighting instrument for dentists to a way
for dentists to test for periodontal disease.

Became a fully integrated home and apartment rental
platform for landlords, prospective tenants, and tenants.
Then focused on landlords as a customer segment, only to
refocus again on tenants and a way to connect them to
First idea was to create a Renren (Chinese Facebook) app that
coordinates event meetings for Chinese college students. It
pivoted into a website for coordinating events in China. Then
pivoted into a Renren app that ranks and reviews all aspects
of college life in China

What major product features to emphasize
Whether to develop more extensive prototype

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