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Are you an Uber, a Gmail - or a Jones?

Are you a Gmail, an Uber — or a Jones? Are you trying to improve the response to a problem, or are you trying to make the problem go away altogether?
Judah Taub
July 19, 2021

When evaluating start-up pitches, a distinction can be made between those that aim to improve on existing solutions (Gmail category) and those that seek to eliminate the problem entirely (Uber category). While both approaches have their merits, correctly identifying the category a start-up falls into is crucial for setting appropriate key performance indicators (KPIs). KPIs for Gmail-type start-ups can be measured against the status quo, while KPIs for Uber-type start-ups may require a different approach. The article highlights Jones, a proptech start-up that initially started as a Gmail by offering an automated solution for submitting Certificates of Insurance (COIs). However, they are now transitioning into an Uber by creating a marketplace that eliminates the need for COIs altogether. This shift in focus reflects the market's demand for a more transformative solution. Ultimately, start-ups should clarify their mission by determining whether they aim to improve existing solutions or eradicate the problem entirely.

Read more of Judah's article in Medium