How to start a digital project without knowing how to programme

There are many things you can do to transform your idea into a sustainable digital business without programming skills. Here are some tips.

By Patricia Araque.

I have met participants in different editions of Explorer who were working on wonderful ideas in the field of digital economy – web and mobile apps – but who faced challenges in bringing them to life because they didn’t have the necessary technical knowledge. 

If this is your issue, I have good news: there are many things you can do to transform your idea into a sustainable digital business without programming skills. Here are some tips: 

  1. Prepare your ‘pitch for the lazy’

The pitch for the lazy doesn’t describe the qualities of your product or service, the size of your market or how you’re going to return the investment times ‘x’. No, pitching for the lazy puts the customer at the centre of the pitch and explains how the product or service solves their problem. 

It’s a pitch where you don’t talk about you or your project but rather about your clients and their problems. You get them to see how you can help them. In short, it’s a sales pitch. 

  • The goal is to get your potential customer to want what you offer. 
  • Do it in the second person singular: exploit the power of ‘you’. 

EXAMPLE: Basecamp – you can see it here

  1. Create a landing page

When you have your pitch for the lazy, you should include it on a landing page; a simple website that will also include a small form so that whoever ‘lands’ on your website can leave their email address to be contacted. 

Here is a list of my favourite resources for building landing pages: 

  • Weld, a very easy-to-use tool for building interactive websites with zero technical knowledge. 
  • Landing Folio, a collection of landing pages that will inspire you in minutes and that you can adapt to make your own. 
  • Signup forms from Mailchimp. Mailchimp is a very powerful tool for email communications. Among its many features is that you can create forms to incorporate into your landing page so you can build your database automatically and use it later in the campaigns you run when launching your product or service. 
  1. Build a community

Now you have somewhere to send the people with problem you aim to solve. They can leave you their email address, and you can offer them your product or service when you launch it. So it’s time to start building a community around your solution. 

How do you do this? Start with places where your potential customers can have conversations about the problems you aim to solve for them. 

EXAMPLE: here are four ways to build a community of followers long before you launch your product.  

 

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