Market Size your Start-up using the VC Method

If you are a startup founder, why not show credibility in your pitches by triangulating your market sizing the method used by VC’s? 

Traditional Market Sizing by Startups: 

1. The Y Combinator (Large Number, Zero Context)

2. TAM, SAM, SOM (same as above but more numbers)

3. The Gartner (Largest number you can find in an analyst report, even if it is not from your market) 

Market Sizing by VC’s: 

1. Size of Largest Incumbent (What are their revenues, margins & valuations?)

2. Bottom Up Estimate (current pricing X # customers in target segment)

3. Latent Demand (future market can be much bigger than current market)

4. Adjacent Markets (Are their any larger adjacent markets to expand into?)

5 Steps for ‘Non Sales’ Founders to Sell.

A simple way for ‘non sales’ founders to think and do sales. The success rate of selling to an existing customer is 60-70% versus 5-20% for new customers. 

Segment your past 24 months (to factor in 12 mths+ of Covid) customers based on a very simple model… 

1. Save all your customer contacts centrally and in the ‘cloud’ (Your email contacts is a good starting point if you don’t have a CRM system yet).

2. List the top 10 customers from the past period with their amounts (You’ll be surprised by ‘small’ consistent customers vs inconsistent ‘big’ spending customers).

3. Assess the buying patterns of the top customers (frequency, types of products, ave amounts)

4. ‘ Label’ 4 tiers of customers:
I.e. ‘Entry Level Eddy’: Buys once, low priced product or only 1 product.

‘Repeat Purchase Rita’: Buys frequently, average priced products, average of 2 products.

‘VIP Velani’: Your biggest contributing customer segment; average 3 products. According to Signore Pareto 80% of your revenue will come from 20% customers. 

‘VVIP Piet’: Ensure that you don’t have customers in this segment, however ask yourself ‘What do I need to offer or do to increase my VIP customers to this level?”

5. Design activities to grow and maintain these customers.

18 Better Questions Founders and Business Leaders should Answer.

Much has been said about the quality of your questions determining the quality of your life.

In the same vane, this can be applied in your business life too.

Here are a few questions which takes a few minutes (2-3 min) to answer which will help reframe and refocus you and your business.

Try answer with the first thing that comes to mind. As this is instinctually the most accurate answer before you start to rationalize it.

  1. What was the final ‘push’ to make you realize that you needed to act on your gut feel? (Like clickIng through to this article…)
  2. Whom do you admire in your industry and why?
  3. What makes you unique and in a category of your own?
  4. What and Who is your 20% that is contributing 80% of revenue, profit and value (if separate)
  5. What and Who is delivering the most growth in the short-term and long-term?
  6. If you could start-over again. What would you do and why?
  7. What are you world champion at (if I was to ask your colleagues/customers)?
  8. What assumptions are you making to come to the conclusions to your biggest barriers or blockages in your business?
  9. What are your complimentary adjacent industries and/or businesses.
  10. What do those people that you trust say when you ask them, what do I need to be focusing on?
  11. What does the data say in your business?
  12. If you could only do 1 thing that had the most impact in your business what would that be?
  13. What does success look like to you in your business and those that work for you?
  14. Who has your customers already, contact them to have a coffee to see how you could collaborate for a mutually beneficial win-win outcome?
  15. What are the 3 things that your customers are saying you are doing right? Can improve on? Would like to see you make/do?
  16. What was your original vision for the business, does it still make you excited?
  17. What would be a new vision for the next (x years) that will make you want to work weekends (again)?
  18. On a blank piece of paper write down a list of your top 10 things that you need to do. Ask yourself, if you could only do 1 thing that would make all of these disappear what would that be? Do it!

Onwards and Upwards


‘Cultures’ for Exponential Growth

I am fascinated by science and nature having graduated with a BSci in Zoology and Physiology at University,

Nowadays when I’m asked to work with businesses I’m constantly seeing overlaps from nature that can be applied into business. Nature can provide a great lens from which to view a business problem or opportunity.

One example is Exponential growth in business driven by new technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Quantum computing in particular.

Any poor University science undergrad will know the feeling of having to do afternoon practicals in the hot labs on a summer day while your Humanities friends spend their afternoons in their equivalent and ‘cool labs’ called beach bars.

I vividly remember a microbiology practical where I grew many different cultures of bacteria and remember being blown away by the speed at which the cells divided under the microscope.

I one looks to nature for examples of exponential growth. Bacteria are a perfect study subject.

Here are the main factors why bacteria grow so rapidly.

You may overlay these examples to emulate as you apply them to the use of new exponential technologies in your business and projects.

1. Simple Single Cell organisms.

2. Self reliant with Asexual reproduce for rapid growth.

3. Single Function – bacteria are programmed to grow by rapid cell mitosis.

4. Fast – bacteria grow fast as a built-in survival mechanism.

5. External Conditions need to be perfect

– neutral pH (company ‘culture’)

– Oxygen and Water (resources)

– Warm temperature (market conditions)

– Substrate on which to grow (with food, preferably protein)

How can you apply these features and conditions within your technology or projects for exponential growth like bacterium?


B.Sci. UCT. Post Grad Marketing

Will Green has forged a successful career as an entrepreneur business leader over the past 18 year. He holds the degree of Bachelor of Science, with majors in Physiology & Zoology from the University of Cape Town. He also holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing from the R&Y School of Marketing Management.

Will specialises in starting, running & leading new disruptive technology businesses. He has extensive experience in consumer behaviour and data. His passion is in exponential technologies that will help countries, organisations and individuals apply the power of abundant thinking and technologies to disrupt and democratise private and public industries.

Will has been intimately involved over the past 11 years advising various international companies (BSkyB, Yahoo, WWE, Manchester United, Sizmek, M4Jam, Vula Mobile) on various executive projects pertaining to expanding into Sub-Saharan African, including market assessment, commercial modelling, marketing, distribution strategies and execution plans.

He has deep experience dealing with and advising clients in the fields of expansion in emerging markets, revenue and profit optimization predominately across Emerging Markets such as Africa and subcontinental Asia.

Will has founded four companies in the Marketing, Media, Business Intelligence and Insurance spaces. He successfully exited his MarkTech company Sizmek Africa (Previously MediaMind Inc) so he could focus on his passion to solve meaningful societal problems with exponential technologies.

His most recent venture is Co.lab (Collaboration Lab) and their products FindBEN & PayBEN which are helping fund administrators find and pay over 5 million South Africans over $4 billion (R60 billion) in unpaid liabilities. To date these products have found over 90,000 beneficiaries and paid over $6 million (R90 million).

From 2015 to 2016 Will was Chairman of the Media Credit Coordinators (MCC), a non profit industry body that was responsible for managing a $200 million (R2.9 billion) trust for providing securities to most of the largest Media companies of Southern Africa including JSE listed Naspers, Times Media, Caxton and the SABC.

A founder member of Peter Diamandis’ Abundance Digital group of global thought leaders whom regularly connect, share and support each other in building their ventures in each respective market and fields of mastery.

Will is from time to time quoted in the press relating to the future of the consumer from a technology perspective. Recent fields of interest include Blockchain, AI and IoT. He has also written various articles for publications, and presented at technology conferences and is in the process of writing a book with his 80 year old father entitled ‘Founders and Fathers’.

Based in Cape Town but available Globally, with an emerging market perspective and abundant mindset in context to a global world in search of new markets and opportunities are what differentiates Will from other global leaders and entrepreneurs.

When not connected to the virtual technology world, he enjoys nothing more than unplugging in nature with his two children, one wife and a Norfolk Terrier called Harvey.

AI & Apple could eat Facebook & Google’s lunch by liberating the most valuable asset in media…

We have all experimented with voice assistants like Apple’s Siri but still in 2018 I don’t use it as regularly as I would like to.

Why is that?

Well in my opinion the user experience has been poor in that ‘she’ doesn’t understand my voice and the quality of her outputs versus the quality of my inputs are mismatched.

So I would rather open up a weather app than ask Siri what the weather is. My expectations are not met and my behavior is such that it won’t change (using apps) as the marginal improvements in time saving or quality of the user experience is not yet justified.

I feel the key to changing this lies in the concept of control and resultant lack of data.

Apple is notoriously famous for being a ‘closed’ company that doesn’t interface as well with other companies and if they do it is under their rules and revenue sharing agreements. Think about the App Store and the need to conform to their App standards and sales commission structures.

Controls are good as it makes sure things work optimally, however controls are bad when it involves an individuals data and the inability to fully benefit off it.

Herein lies the problem.

What is the solution?

A personal AI that utilizes all the data across all your digital behaviors and apps and presents it to you in a super useful and customizable format. An truly open customer-centric blockchain that allows you to get fairly rewarded for the use of your data, hereby disrupting the digital advertising economy as we know it today.

I call it MIAI.

Imagine if all the data from all your daily habits are shared to combine it in a format that allows you to:

  • Be Aware
  • Make better Choices
  • See the Results of these Choices

But what if each of these was smarter and I could know how I could optimise this time by networking with other likeminded people who like listening to the same Podcast, exercises at the same gym and is looking for a Business partner .

The options are endless when you consider what you spend your daily data consumption on and what data gets inputted by you hourly. Your Notes, Messages, Likes, Reads, Listens, Steps, Location, Friends.

Imagine if Apple liberated the control of their most valuable asset… it’s Customers?

The technology is available (blockchain) the platforms are available (iOS, iPhone and iCloud) and most importantly the timing is ripe where thanks to Facebook trust in tech companies is at one of its lowest levels.

The opportunity for one of the 4 members of this new industrial complex to be a truly ‘consumer-centric’ is now. I believe Apple is best positioned to be the company to delivery on their strong consumer privacy values (google FBI and Apple) by giving consumers the power of their data in their own hands.

Much like Tesla’s ambitions of your autonomous vehicle to be liberated into a self-driving fleet so it can earn you some extra income while you are not using it.

Apple could provide its customer the benefit of integrating valuable information all in one place and the ability to earn an income from whichever company wants to use it for new product R&D modeling or to reach your attention.

Since advertising is not the lifeblood of Apple’s business, where it is for Alphabet & Facebook. As consumer’s attention addiction to Facebook feeds, WhatsApp messages, Instagram stories, YouTube videos increases.

The question needs to be asked how much is your attention worth and why are you not getting rewarded for being distracted by the engineers whom are the smarter people on this planet?

NYU Stern Professor of Marketing Scott Galloway best sums up the current situation when he famously says that in the 40’s the brightest minds developed the atom bomb, in the 60’s they put a man in space and on the moon. Today the brightest minds on the planet with access to the most capital and technologies want to “Sell you a F$cking Nissan!”

We know that by nature of the high cost of entry into the Apple family, on average an Apple users have a higher income level than an Android users.

Therefore an Apple user would be valuable to companies wanting to target the top earners wallets.

I welcome your ideas, as a personalized and profitable AI in your pocket become a reality in the future and is not just a tech buzzword.

MIAI (My AI) by Will Green @willjngreen

7 June 2018

I Need You to Tell Me Your Customer Service Pain — Convince and Convert: Social Media Consulting and Content Marketing Consulting

Customer service is being disrupted in the same way marketing has been disrupted. And for the same reasons: mobile, social, Millennials, and consumer behavior trends. But while there is a LOT of conversation about marketing disruption, there is in comparison very little chatter about customer service disruption. (You can help fix that. Please take 2…

via I Need You to Tell Me Your Customer Service Pain — Convince and Convert: Social Media Consulting and Content Marketing Consulting

Wasting our technology surplus — Seth Godin’s Blog on marketing, tribes and respect

When someone handed you a calculator for the first time, it meant that long division was never going to be required of you ever again. A huge savings in time, a decrease in the cognitive load of decision making. Now what? You can use that surplus to play video games and hang out. Or you…

via Wasting our technology surplus — Seth Godin’s Blog on marketing, tribes and respect

The possibility of optimism (the optimism of possibility) — Seth Godin’s Blog on marketing, tribes and respect

Is the glass half full or half empty? The pessimist sees what’s present today and can only imagine eventual decline. The glass is already half empty and it’s only going to get worse. The optimist understands that there’s a difference between today and tomorrow. The glass is half full, with room for more. The vision…

via The possibility of optimism (the optimism of possibility) — Seth Godin’s Blog on marketing, tribes and respect

New study highlights the need for a omnichannel customer service strategy — Smart Insights

Customers want good customer service, and don’t like being passed between channels On average, customers interact with four different channels when seeking customer service related enquiries from a business. The types of channels they use or expect to be able to use when contacting a business is changing too. Any marketer worth their salt knows that…

via New study highlights the need for a omnichannel customer service strategy — Smart Insights