First Customer Network

For many of you, the scenario I am about to describe will sound familiar. You have an idea for a business. You’ve spent months doing your research—defining the problem you are trying to solve. You’ve defined the customer base and refined your product or service. Now, you need to get in front of potential customers to determine market viability and generate that first coveted consumer.

If only someone could put a system in place to match startups with potential customers.

Well, someone has. The Startup Collaborative (TSC) at the Chamber has been thinking about this issue, and we have an exciting solution. In partnership with TSC, we are creating the First Customer Network, a program that will connect established businesses—you, our members—with our local startups working on solutions for real-world problems.

We’re asking our board and general membership to sign up for this program. Once you’ve joined, we will play matchmaker (in typical Chamber fashion). With time, we think we will become the most productive source for matching local startups with those critical first customers that help validate ideas and determine market viability.

Initially, the relationship between the startup and the established business might result more in advice and counsel, rather than in purchases. However, imagine the long-term relationship that could be developed as the product or service is refined to better meet customer needs—and revolutionize industries.

This exciting business cycle is one example of lightning striking in the same place more than once—with benefits for startups and members. That’s what makes First Customer Network one of the best steps to forever-customer connections.


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