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Like most entrepreneurs, I have a million ideas going around in my head every day -- ways to run the sauna for my own friends and their children, or how to throw a kick-ass party that both entrepreneurs and academics would enjoy. In the beginning, some of these wild ideas were already established competitive products in the New England market; some of these ideas were so outlandish I couldn’t get a single person on board (like my FreeHugger App idea ... aka group hugs on demand). Last year for the mobile sauna, I did a preliminary survey for the transition from ideation to validation.
Fast forward a year as we close in on the YET TO BE ANNOUNCED startup launch day, I really needed to figure out what I’m going ask potential customers to help create "community buy-in" and the type of environment that would thrive in Maine. Even though I’m a native Mainer, performing rounds of customer discovery interviews to learn about your own community is not always easy. Tell us about the last time you went to a sauna. Tell us about your sauna experience. Tell us about your community. Why is that? Why is that? Why is that? Why is that?
I have been asking lots of awkward questions in interviewing people: talking about their emotions, digging into the “why” of Maine sauna culture, explaining to newbs what a sauna actually is in the first place, talking about nudity and cultural norms. I’ve been asking for stories and listening to the good, bad and ugly sauna experiences.
It’s hard to do - but we’ve already got a nice community around us. A big, big thank you to Coffee By Design owner Mary Allen Lindemann for helping us conduct the interviews over the last few weeks and to Kim Koehler and Jim Britt for support and incentive advice. LRS project was lucky to be featured on facebook.
A long post to say: fill out the survey by April 30 and be entered into a chance to win a mobile sauna rental experience: https://littleredsauna.com/take-our-survey