How To Create A Lean Canvas Framework For Business
When it comes to business, we’re often met with the three Ps: people, product, and process. The importance of focusing on all three is paramount to your success. Get the right people and you can rest easy knowing tasks will be completed to a sufficient standard. Create a commercially viable product and you’re one step closer to financial stability. Neglect your process and what once seemed like solid foundations can come crashing down like a house of cards. (1)
This is where a lean canvas framework comes in. 65% of us are visual learners, meaning that supporting our vision with a lean canvas framework can be hugely beneficial to business processes and outcomes. Not only do infographics look cool, but they are also relatively straight forward to make yourself. Here, we look at lean canvas frameworks and how to put one together. (2)
What exactly are lean canvas frameworks?
Lean canvas frameworks are a kind of infographic that function as a simplified business model layout. It follows a problem-solution approach whereby companies and startups can clearly map any hurdles they face and attempt to troubleshoot them. Many of the world’s biggest companies’ success stories are rooted in examples of lean canvas. (2)
The simplicity of lean canvases should not be a deterrent. Unlike most business analysis tools, which can be overly complex and expensive, a lean canvas can be very low cost. What’s important is that you bring all the relevant departments into the process so you can carefully and effectively plan each step.
Many of us can get caught up with the day-to-day operations, we can lose sight of the fundamental outlook of the business. A lean canvas pulls you back on track so you can create a quality and instructional overview of your business.
A lean canvas consists of a number of boxes that get filled out to formulate your business plan. Ideally, they should be filled out in a brief, thorough, and articulate way that clearly demonstrates your business goals. Fill out a small box with each of the following so you can create your own.
Identify the problem you want to solve
The long-term viability of your business is often measured by the significance of the problem it fixes. After you’ve identified this, it’s time for your business to ask a range of questions like: How common is this problem? How much would people be willing to pay to solve it?
Find a solution to said problem
After identifying the problem, you are going to need to solve and troubleshoot it. Do this by considering what special or unique features your product has, and analyzing the market to establish what other businesses contribute to this space.
How will you measure your success?
What are the key metrics that will determine whether your idea is successful or not? Some different metrics you can use include revenue or income, statistics on engagement, and customer surveys.
In this section, list all the operational costs of the business. Think about the cost of marketing, distribution costs, production costs, and salaries. This box ensures your business model and staff capacity are manageable.
Uniqueness of your company
Assess what your business does that is unique, and how this trumps the products and services of your competition. If you find that many businesses exist with the same or similar business models as your own, what can you do to separate yourself from them?
The business world is rife with instances of stolen ideas, unscrupulous business practices, and bullying from larger companies. Anticipate these before they happen by ensuring your business idea cannot be copied. You need to fight to maintain your competitive advantage.
Here, you need to think about who your customers are, the problems that they face, and how your business is going to improve or contribute to their lives and values. Take a walk in their shoes and try to objectively assess the problem you are solving for them and the value of this.
It is vitally important to consider how exactly you are you going to reach customers. You will need to understand the specifics behind your customer segments. With this in tow, you can consider content marketing, billboards, social media, or SEO.
Here, you need to consider what your revenue model and profit margins will be. You can consider this against current earnings, but be realistic about the recurring revenue that you will generate.
Review your lean canvas
Laying this information out in a way you can easily review is meant to help you understand your strengths and weaknesses as a business. Having this information displayed all in one place makes it easier to process and map changes as you need to.
By filling out these components of your lean canvas, you can enhance the value and efficiency of your business, allowing you to more effectively dominate your niche.