Health Innovators
Health Innovators

Episode 93 · 3 months ago

4 critical strategies you might be missing w/ Aaron Enten


Whether you’re looking to dive deep into customer discovery, uncover (track or change) valuable KPIs, or pitch an investor, there are many strategies you can utilize based on the path you take.

And, knowing when, who, how, and why you’re making decisions when commercializing your company is only half your goal - you need to know how to use the data you’re collecting.

When it comes to data and scientific research, Aaron Enten knows enough to know he doesn’t know it all - and he’s here to explain why that is and how you can move your company forward.

Building a successful startup is the holy grail for today’s entrepreneurs - and we’ve gathered strategies and insights that will help even the greenest among us.

Why not grab a chair and tune in? Listen to how Aaron navigated a complicated entrepreneurial space using creativity and determination - and came out whole on the other side.

Here are the show highlights:

  • What you think you know - and what you really don’t (6:11)
  • This is the secret to customer discovery (9:16)
  • When to reexamine pre-existing beliefs about your commercialization strategy (12:40)
  • The #1 way to do customer discovery WRONG (19:34)
  • When and why to revisit your business model canvas (21:53)
  • How to determine what your KPIs and measurable outcomes should be (33:12)

Guest Bio

Aaron Enten is CEO and Co-Founder of Insight Optics, an organization working to increase compliance rates by bringing trained ophthalmologists to the point of primary care.

An experienced CEO and CTO in the medical device industry, Aaron has built an enviable reputation in Medical Device Innovation, Technology Commercialization, Scientific Research, and Financier Relations.

Aaron earned his Ph.D. in Bioengineering and his MBA in Innovation Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

If you’d like to reach out to Aaron, you can find him on LinkedIn at Aaron Enten, PhD on his webpage at, or email him at aaron@iocare.

You're listening to health, innovators,a podcast and video show about the leaders influencers and early, adoctors who are shaping the future of health care on your host Dor Roxy Movie. Welcome back to the show healthinnovators. On today's episode, I am sitting down with Aaron Anton who isthe founder and CEO of inside optics. Welcome to the show Eron. Thank you forhaving a face. Brat Beer, I'm glad to have you here and to dig into yourjourney in this conversation. So before we get started, just tell our audiencea little bit about your background and what you've been innovating these days,yeah. So a little bit on me, I did my undergraduate out of Johns Hopkins inBiomedical Engineering and Applied Math. I ended up going to work for a littlebit as a project manager at a myoelectric prosthetic start up andrealized quickly that I really liked the entrepreneurial space, but had noidea what I was doing so I ended up going back to Hopkins. I got my mastersin bioengineering innovation and design, which is probably what you would be familiarwith. In customer discovery needs identification,stake, holder, incentive alignment, but specifically for the medical devicesspace. So it's. How do you find problems and address those problemsdirectly in a way that meets stick holder needs from that program. I helped to cofoundtwo different companies, one of which is still active. The other saw my firstsuccessful exit and from there I wanted to get more deeplyinvolved in the science. I ended up going to Georgia tech getting my PhD inBio Engineering and ended up picking up an NBA along the way, because something,a professor told me really stuck, which was if you want to really have animpact in the space it doesn't matter what you do or how you do it. If youdon't build a business model around it, you're, ultimately not going to be assuccessful as you could be preach. Great that's most of my background. I foundit inside optics during my PhD program. We've been running since two thousandand fifteen two thousand and sixteen our company is dedicated to preventingpreventable diseases, which is a very broad category, but we have a nichefocus right now. In diabetic and hypertensive retinopathy and I've beenrunning the company for the last two or three years now and we're starting togain a lot of traction and grow pretty rapidly. That's wonderful! So obviouslyyou are very similar to me. A lifetime learner can't get enough of it very true. It's like that. I want tolearn the hard way. Let's just go ahead and dig into those books and the other. So you know that kind of just leads meto my first question. So how do you think that all of the learning that you'vegot that you've gleaned has changed or affected how you are building andcommercializing this company going forward yeah one of the things? That's was reallystressed again and again be it through my master's program in innovation anddesign or through the tiger program. I went through as a PhD or in the MBA.It's it's all. Customer centric and a lot of people tend to target a like product market, fit wherethey're trying to push in to the space. They have an idea for a solution andthey try to find the whole to plug it into. But my educational background isspecifically: How do you find that... poll? How do you find the gap?The need and then build a solution specifically to fill that pain, pointand solve that problem, so that you can create a solution? That's actuallyimpactful for what you're working on and I feel like, compared to at leastsome of the companies that I've either seen or someof the processes that I've had friends go through. It's very much a let's talkto as many people as we can before we jump into any specific space and not beafraid to pivot and change as we continue to conduct customer discoveryinterviews down the road yeah, and I think one of the things that you kindof you know touch on is that it is like part of the culture of the business.It's just something that you do it's not something that you did at oneparticular moment in time, and now you don't do customer discovery anymore,because it's done you put it in the Revere Mirror and now you build yourbusiness is part of the fat woven into thefabric of the company, and when you you don't stop customer discovery until youclose the company yeah, it's evolutionary right, your come as yourcompany grows and changes. You need to be sure that you're still addressingthe same problems or needs that are present in the space and if thoseproblems shift, you need to shift with them. Yep, absolutely so you're right.Most of the people that I come across have a lot of bias about what thetarget customer wants, whether they're an engineer whether they are aphysician they've, been in the industry, they identified at first hand and justskip over that they're just really excited about the product. Buildingthat and you know, don't don't they're so committed to the product in thesolution. They don't really want to learn anything that takes them thatveers them away from their original vision. I think is why we have such ahigh failure rate of ninety five percent of innovations that brock tomarket fail. That's a I mean if you look at thehistory of inside optics, the business model, the TECTA, the marketing strategy. All of it isdramatically different from what it was a year ago, let alone five years ago,when the company was founded right, it's yeah, you can't be afraid to pivotand change and grow with the customer and the market as it's growing as well,and I think that's really important to because sometimes we look at that asfailure like Oh man, something's wrong with me. I missed this. I got this wrong because I've changedit chap, because I had to change this because I've learned something new uncovered to new insights, and I thinkwhat you're touching on is that it's just part of this process that thewhole strategy development is. You know what I call like build test and thenoptimize- and it's just really agile right, just like software development,but the strategy itself is Agile. Yeah, yeah, it's a it's a siclike processright. You start with asking questions and if you're not ending with askingquestions, then you've you've missed the entire point of your discoveryprocess: Yeah Yeah Gosh. Why is that so difficult for for for most people tokind of like grasp? You know why. Why are we so headstrong and want to justskip over that whole discovery? I mean I have people that are like now thattakes too long or no, I don't have money for that. I got five million forthe products, but I'll have anything for customer discovering I mean I feellike there is there's very few excuses because whatever excuses you can comeup with, there is an answer to it. If it's you don't have the funding or thetime you could go through the I core program out of NSF for an Ih and angive you fifty grands to fly around the country and ask people questions right, there's, there's solutions out there. Ihave no idea what makes people... stubborn about wanting to ask thosequestions and really diving at probably some level of ownership over theproduct. But if a PhD teaches you anything, it's that you know nothingand I takes me he be asking everyone everything that they possibly know.Isn't that so ironic right that you get this doctrine this PhD and you're likewell, what did you learn? I learned that I know nothing. That's what I like.I learned a very intense amount about this one little scope of space that isprobably applicable in this one or two realms, but a second you step out of it.Oh Boy, am I out of my death, so one of the things I think is just reallyinteresting and exciting for me and having this conversation is that everysingle researcher that that's turned entrepreneur has had that same passionand enthusiasm for customer Discovery Right, it's just ingrained in you andthat to me is such a fundamental of success. Like it's a key ingredient m yeah! That's I need, I be be itreaching out through extra version, probably like you and myself, where youwant to talk to as many people as you can or be it through a more introvertedsense where you're diving deep into the research and reports. I tan't like thatthat level of investigative query is just the essence of people who gothrough the a PhD program. Sure yes exactly so so, let's just you know kindof stay here for a little bit like what are some of the things that you learnedin the customer discovery that we're just like real Aha moments for you andmaybe even what are some of the struggles. You know because you know getting access to peoplegetting them to participate, getting the state consistent, giving them tocontribute the right insights that you need. You know, there's a lot ofchallenges, doing customer discovery. So let's talk about that a bit yeah, Imean my my secret to customer discovery is ask questions that aren't leadingand try to get them to tell a story right. It's it's not in the yes! Noanswers! It's not a! Would you use this product because the answer will alwaysbe yes, it can tell me about this or abstract it and say I know thisprobably doesn't affect you or your practice. But what say? What is thecommon problem in the space or in your field and as long as you're askingquestions that are abstracting it and lead to stories and experience pointsyou just need to be able to pass through and pull out the content, yeahand people like to talk and that's especially about themselves andespecially about what they're working on and what causes problems for them.So just be willing to listen and ask questions, and you do well tell you howmany times you know you during the customer Discovery Interview- and youmight, you know- have many of them going on right. We have researchers onthe team that are doing these interviews and I'm like listen. Youcannot book them back to back because I know they're like I only have twentyminutes, but then once you get them on the phone talking, they want to talk toyou for an hour. They want to tell you everything because they're like Oh, youwant to know what I think I'll tell you yeah. I mean that's really what it is and forUS specifically one of the critical takeaways that we've found. That insideoptics is that for most of the disease states thatwere targeting all of the medicines interventions, technologies therapies,they all already exist right. When you look at diabetic and hypertensiveretinopathy as an example, ninety percent of all of the diseases arepreventable. As long as you're going to your optimality once per year, you'renot going to go blind. It will not progress yea, it's as easy as that, butit's really the secret that we've really started to focus in on is itsbehavioral, not technological right.

It's like telling a patient. They needto go home and floss more than a significant majority of them. Just aregoing to do it and, unfortunately, in our space we're finding more and morethat it's predominantly affecting impoverished, marginalized otherminority and severely impacted groups, and that's where we think that, whereyou can make a larger difference is find out where the patients already allr what they already do target them, where they are so they don't have tohave any kind of behavioral modification, and as long as you canwork it so that the monetary and health care incentivesare aligned for the Physitian stake holders on either end, then you cansolve the problem with technology, even though it's a behavioral problem, mmmmm,okay, so that makes sense. So was thereanything that you learned that changed your pre existing beliefs about yourbusiness model, about your commercialization strategy? Yeah, Imean we started in a completely different disease set right. We weren'teven looking at diabetic and hypertensive retinopathy lether low and reopen in general right. We actuallystarted in neurology and have pivoted dramaticallyfrom that space, but it was just asking questions of the people and finding outwhat the problem state is and where their pain points lie and exist, andfor a lot of the optimality that we were interviewing, especially in theneuro optimally space. It was not only can I not get patients into mydoor, but even with the amount of patience that aren't coming to me,which is more than half of the population that needs to I'm alreadyover encumbered and overburdened with the patients that I've seen there justaren't enough opthamologist in the space to do the job that needs to bedone for preventative medicine, so it quickly became a well. Where are thepatients that aren't going going right now and for the opthamologist that areoverburdened? How can we offload that burden to another space, that's moreequipped or better capable of handling that volume of patience? And that'swhat ultimately led to our current business model and platform where it'sa communication? It's take a computer vision, machine learning, system, D,skill it this specialized captor process to the point where you can putit into a nurse technologist and and let them be responsible for recordingthe content and just give them real time. Feedback to say, you've got theright information, it's of a diagnosable quality and with those twohere's a list of local optimality to you that not only can they provide adignostic on the content you capture, but the patient can follow up directlywith the person who did the pre screening in the first place: M: okay,powerful YEA. Would you say that this is disruptive? I would say that according to ClaytonChristenson? Yes, it's a it's an older technology that sure it's empowered by computer vision and machine learningwhich are cutting edge tools, but at the end of the day, these aretechniques that have existed continue to be developed and we're just applyingthem to a new space in a new wit or an old space in a new way. So, accordingto that, yes, I would argue that it's disruptive as far as like. Is itsomething that is brand new cutting edge? No one's ever done it before noone's ever considered it before, probably not right. There's there'snothing new under the Sun Yeah.

So how do you think that affects yourcommercialization strategy, because you know there's there's a lot of pros andcons between me and I've got something like completely radical andrevolutionary never been done before. Oh Man, but now people don't get whatI'm doing to where I'm doing something that people get people understand. Idon't have to do a whole lot of education around it and it's stillsolving a problem in meeting a need. Yeah I mean it makes it a lot moretangible to the end users right at the end of the day. Our our specific goalis: How do we make this as easy as possible to use? How do we make it sothat someone who doesn't have specialization or doesn't have specifictraining can still use the technology and conduct it at a specialized level?And how do we make it easy and accessible to not just the non at huricpopulation, but those marginalized groups and to the doctors that areconducting the exams as well? So yes, we're using a bunch of this really coolphenomenal technology, but we black box it so that they don't have to worryabout how it's specifically working. They just know that it works and theycan jump in use it and have a wonderful user experience at the end of the day.Yeah! That's great! That's great! So you know in my mind the way I've mappedout this commercialization journey. That first step is test that discovery,research and testing those business ideas so check get that under your belt.Not many people do, but you got it great okay. So, let's move to the nextone. Let's talk about your market strategy in Your Business Model. So, asyou were figuring out and iterating, your business model just share whatthat experience. It was like some of the Ahas and some of the maybe bruises and Stuffa along a way yeah. So I mean thebiggest thing for us, as a company was in that chicken and egg problem thatspawns around any multi sided platform right. We have. We have not just twodifferent users of the technology, but neither of the users are the ones thatare drawing the true health benefit from the platform right. So how do youwho do you target? Why are you targeting them? What is your strategyof execution and then how are you going to convert that into something thatscales down the road? And it was just a lot of talking to individuals a lot ofdoing a B testing to see who we should be targeting? Why we're targeting themand it's a process that we're still deep in the understanding and evolutionand discovery of because, yes, we've been able to on board our firstcustomers, we've been conducting direct sales. We've identified a pathway thatmakes the most sense, given the value ad components for both the patient, theprimary care and the specialist right that direct sales pathway is not anideal pathway to scale right. It's not something that we can just hire athousand people across the country and start to roll out in every single state inmultiple different bassets. So we're starting to look now at who ourpotential channel partners that we can work with. Who are some physicians networks, or should webe going for like federally qualified health agencies in the ruralcommunities? Where is the biggest impact? Who are the biggest players?How can we partner with them to drive a lot of value? A lot of quickly aresorry, a lot of value very quickly, yeah, but yeah that it's all discoveryright now for us, which is why it's so exciting? How are you analyzing that?How are you doing those Ab tests and kind of collecting that data andcomparing I call it a pathto profit,...

...comparing one path to another, and youknow one might lead to faster profit. One might lead to more profit, oneright, there's all kinds of different pros and cons for each one. How are youanalyzing that yeah well, we've started off with segment ing it, because eachindividual channel or each individual potential good to market pathway isgoing to have dramatically different results and traumatically differentanswers to our customer discovery inquiries. But at the end of the day,it really just boils down to you need to talk to as many people as you canask the questions that are going to lead to. Hopefully, the answers thatyou're trying to get without guiding them to the answers that you want toget yeah, yeah and documenting it all incredibly heavilyand reviewing it there's one of my professors. Back inthe day, he specifically believed that there isno such thing as intuition in any space right. It's nota you just kind of know how things work. It's just an interconnection ofprocesses and the ability to draw lines back and forth so you're, justinternalizing a lot of the data and your brain is making those connectionsand spitting out results that make sense, given the logic of the worldthat you've been presented so far. So how do you take that process ofcustomer Discovery Document it and draw those lines between different usercases and scenarios and stories in order to derive the best result foryour company as it's growing, and that in and of itself is a process thatchanges as well? So it's just these layers of complexity, on complexity andis ever evolving scope. That always seems to be this unwieldy beast thatyou can never truly grapple right, exactly you're like Oh, my gosh. Whenare we going to get there and we're making progress along the way? Eventhough we can't see it and I think a lot of times, you know as entrepreneurs, we veryanxious we like to have things like done now done yesterday and are knownto be really patient, and so you know we can kind of get frustrated with thewrestling that happens and like let's just pick one and go with it and you know, and sometimes that works out.Sometimes it doesn't work out. I think it's the wrestling. Are you using thebusiness model, canvas as a tool to work through that? Yes and no right, we created a businessmodel, canvas when we first started out and then we re visited it, probably atleast monthly, if not probably quarterly, we've re done it a number oftimes. We expanded it to the point where it's not just an eight and a halfby eleven page like this is a ever of a white board that no one can even makesense of it unless you've been doing it from day one Rigan we've gone back andcut it all down to eight and a half Bileton a bunch of stuff. It's a it's awild ride, but I agree with you completely: There's there's always thisvice set of just pick a path and drive at it, and I personally think thatthat's a you can sit and come up with all of these strategies and narrow downto what you think the best one is, but that can take just as long as pick awrong path drive down it learn from it pivot and change yeah. Personally, I'mof the mindset fail fast right at IC. Something go for it drive down. It makesure that you've defined what success looks like before you go down that path,but also be prepared to pivot and change rapidly, and then, of course, Ipair myself with my co founder, who is very much a let's, have a plan ofaction. Let's get things organized, let's know what we're looking for anddrive down these specific things and narrow down specific scopes. So it'sabout balance. It's a good, yes, good,...

Merrige, good balance, Yeh O partnerthere yeah! You know when I think about thebusiness model canvas it's such a great tool, but it is extremely difficult touse when we're talking about multicium, it's. It adds to the complexity of hisone flat sheet of paper that you're trying to like. Well nowthis you know this over here and no it connects to this. I mean it justbecomes a lot more complicated, so we've done similar things where we'vekind of created our own templates, but based upon that those theories andthose models and yeah, I mean we paired those documents with a lot of otherthings right. We I hate mine maps but they're incredibly useful, and I don'thave a more effective solution. The business model canvas is pretty likeone may be too dimensional when you're dealing with and and dimensional space.It makes it much more convoluted I've yet to find a solution that reallyy drives that this is how you canreally summarize it make it something that is almost pictographic and tryingreduces the end. Dimensional complexity to something that is just there andobvious. But you know that's part of the challenge and the beauty of thespace that we're working in right and it's we're only adding more dimensions.Every time we go back and reassess and of the day were a platform andtechnology. So just because we're focused on diabetic and hypertensiveretten up at the today doesn't mean that that's the only space that we'redealing in we're actually working on contracts with partners now that arebreaking us into the dermatology space and the dental space and theotolaryngology space. So it's you now we're adding. We went from a fourdimensional state cover model to now. Here's similar structures that we'veabstracted, but it's a completely different, need, set a completelydifferent set of pain points. So is just all over the place right. He can an organized as a monster, butwe do a decent job of staying on top of it. I think yeah, we, I didn't part ofthe joy of entrepreneurship yeah, I'm sure. If someone came in and looked atmy notes, they be like what is this. Who are you I with this, even a thingthat you can understand and comprehend right? Exactly Hey! It's Dr Roxy, here with a quickbreak from the conversation? Are you trying to figure out what moves youneed to make to survive and thrive in the new Co vid economy? I want everyhealth innovator to find their most viable and profitable Vivit strategy,which is why I created the Covic proof. Your Business Pisoti, the pivot kit isa step by step framework that helps you find your best pivot strategies. Itwalks you through six categories. You need to examine for a three hundred andsixty degree view of your business. I call them the six critical pivot lenses.As you make your way through this comprehensive kit, you'll be armed withthe tools, tips and strategies you need to make sure you can pivot with speedwithout missing out on critical details and opportunities, learn more at legacy:Hyphen Daco Back Kit. So I want to talk about funding for aminute, because you know that's a key t step of the pre launch process right,getting done for the innovation getting funding for the o. You know to buildthe business and- and so I want to know like- what'syour take, what's your experience on funding these types of initiativesright? So it's one thing to get someone to find your product, your platform,your technology, it's very different to Funan. You know to build the business,but then funding customer discovery, funding continuous customer discoveryfunding. You know five different business models with you know sixdifferent. You know five different...

...pudentia target ad dances like youdescribe and multisets. So what has that journey been like for you againpros and cons in your experience? Yea I mean we take advantage of everyresource that makes itself available to us, be in funding. Specifically for customerdiscovery- or we work very closely with Georgia, techthrough their creat and Tiger program, so we provide internships to everythingfrom undergraduate all the way through to masters and PhD level programs foranalysis. We work closely with our customers.Ideally right. Ideally, you would have your customer pain for that discoveryprocess right if it's something that has enough financial and motivation andincentive tied to the process of that discovery that it's worth it for you toonboard it as a specific resource. You can always hire in a new person andsure that they're trained or hiring a new person to take over the Ardi tofinder establish things and go from there. But as far as funding like justregular start up business funding is concerned, we've always been in theseweird spaces, where we're to funding has always seemed to align itself withwe're too far along for the earlier stage, but not far enough along for thelater stage, and it's always been this challenge of well. What Mile Stones dowe need to clearly divine one milestones? Do we need to establishbefore we start to approach these specific investors and what milestonesare we really defining as internal versus externalfor really conveying where we are as a company and the value that we add andbring and have already established? So, let's talk about that? What are some ofthe mile stones that are really important externally t to help you witheither getting new customers or getting funding yeah, I would say the the first majormilestone is actual product or solution validation, but it's that initialcustomer discovery. It's you have an idea. You think you have anunderstanding of the problem, but do you actually know what it is, and I Iby the establishment of what are the pain points, what makes it a s? Whatmakes your solution, something that people can't not have right and how doyou grow and evolve your technology from there? Is it? Is it a Biblebusiness? Is there some a model that exists around it? Is it something thatyou can build and sustain from there I'd say the next critical milestone is:can you establish some level of MB P right? That's just even if it's just apower point that you can click and hyperlink to slides internally yeah ifsomething that you can put in front of customers that says hey. This is whatwe're working on. What are the problems? Not? Is this something you would use,or is this a solution to your problem? But why is this wrong? Why doesn't itmeet your needs? What are the gaps that exist in what we think is the solutionto your space right from there, you kind of start to get into standardbusiness milestones right, you're looking at is their product market fitright? Are The customers actually? Not only will they say yes, we want to buythis, but will they actually give you money right, a plane? It's very. If Icame to you and said Hey, would you pay for this and I'm not asking you to payfor it? The answer is going to be yes at least like ninety percent of thetime. Right then, if I come to you and say all right pay me for it, that's anit's an entirely different ball game when you're asking them to take adollar out of their pocket yeah. So true, it's from there! It's can youget your first customers? Can you find those key opinion leaders that can helpyou to drive and evolve products growth?...

Can you start to make it into thatdeath valley gap where, yes, your key opinion leaders really want and willuse the technology, but beyond the key opinion leaders is, can you get thatearly majority? Can you start to grow? Can you reach especially when you'regoing to DC's? Can you reach those like one K, Tenk, fifty monthly, recurringrevenue thresholds and that's we're at the very early stages of that spaceright now, right, we're trying to were operating absurdly lean right? If youlook at what we've accomplished versus the amounts of money we've spent on it,it's we people would look at us like how.How are you eating and still have people excited about? The broad soundslike you are incredibly creative and you're. Definitely a hustler. A positive way it boils down to driveright, and this is something that I m. I am personally invested not onlyfinancially but emotionally as well right, it's a it's a disease set thathas affected people in my family. It's a disease process and a pathway on agrander scale than I can guarantee will affect me at some point in my life, ifit hasn't already and it's something that I can point to a person and go,you know someone or you are personally affected by this yourself right, yeah,very pervasive, yeah so because drive and for me, there's also a personalmotivation to prove scientifically, which is a awhole different conversation on burden of evidence, but to provescientifically that I can take what I know and gather around me: people whoknow more and better about different subsets of spaces and really createsomething that is of value to impact at least one patient's life right. That'sall. I want to see out of what I'm building and I one patient is like. Oh,that's easy, no problem! That's the immediate gut reaction, but hey anienteprove that you've impacted one. Patient's life in a preventative scopeis a whole ball game in and of itself. Absolutely so, let's talk about that.Let's talk about KPIS. Let's talk about outcomes, you know when we're doing those earlystage, pilots we've got those early customers, you know. So how do we determine whatthose KPIS and outcomes measures should be yeah in order to validate oursolution, the safety, the efficacy of what we're bringing to market yeah?Luckily, I don't have to define a lot of them right that I don't have to bethe one that creates new spaces or subsets for Kpis right. There arepeople that have done it before their entire books on it Thatt you can go inreference. There are web based resources that you can go and pullinformation from, and there are even groups that have completely categorizedat all so like if you're in the MEDTECH space or, if you're a platform or ifyou're, a software as a service or a computer vision play or your educationfinance, whatever it may be. You can go through and pull the ones that defineyour specific subspecies, but it's a matter of knowing understanding andthen being willing to modify and retroactively. Go back and look at someof the things that you're driving down so an example of that is, we'verecently started having a lot of conversations in the social impactspace and we've come across the United Nations, sustainable development goalsfor both health care and ubiquitous access, quality of care andreducing those inequalities in these spaces from a socioeconomic perspective,and we had not been tracking any of...

...that up until like two months ago. Sonow we're looking at this saying. This is exactly what we're doing. It's abeautiful space that defines the true value and impact that we can have. Whatare the KPIS that the United Nations has set for specific targets or goalsin those spaces, and we can go and pull them and retroactively list out? Thisis how we were growing and look this one connects over here to this revenuemetric or this one will connect to profit down the road or this one drivespotential investment dollars, and it's all interconnected at the end ofthe day to say: Hey, which ones are going to create the most value for youas a company, while still proving and validating the technology as a specifictarget for you to grow down the road and in the future yeah. So I think thatthat is really insightful. Is that you don't have to have it? You don't haveto make it up that it's out there and I kind of circle back to you know whatyou're talking about and what you mentioned the beginning is the customerdiscovery. Is that ask the customers, those those stake holders that you youknow instead of trying to act like you've, got it all figured out likeokay? Well, what KPIS are more are important to you. How are you going tomeasure this as a successful initiative or engagement and doing that over andover with different customers and being able to see those patterns and go okay?We've got it internally as well right you got totreat your own company as its own as your own customer discovery incentivewhen you're looking internally to, but I need to be flexible enough to adoptnew things. You need to be able to go back and look retroactively and say hey.This was important and we weren't doing it. Let's start doing it and see whatit looks like now and really apply that moving fower and you need to be willingto grow and change as it goes down the road right. If, at the end of the day,we o we start tracking for the next year and a half KPI number twenty sevenon our list and we get a year and a half down an we say yeah. This wascritical a year and a half ago when we adopted it, but looking at it now, it'sjust another metric and it's not really defining anything. Because we've movedto this stage. You need to be willing to understand, not just that yoursystems and of measurement are going to change, but that your specific growth pathway is goingto be impacted by what you're looking at what you were looking at and whatyou need to be looking at down the road right, yeah, and I think just to add tothat. I think that getting a pulse of that on an ongoingbasis, while those customer engagements our pilot engagements are in place areso important because stakeholders change right and the whoever waschampion this initiative and said: Oh, these are Kate, the Kpis were measuring.You know that person might not long, no longer be there or the strategicinitiatives within the organization could have evolved over time. And soyou know you don't want to end up wasting time and effort getting at theGIN. Thinking that you made a home run and they're like yeah, but now wedecided that we're really wanting to measure these three things you know andmaking sure that you're collecting data on those things along the way, theright data s to be able to prove that yeah yeah and that's what customerdiscovery boils down to right. At the end of the day, it's you're learningnew things and, if you're capable of adopting that new knowledge andplugging it into your system and using it to inform your decisions, you're,I'm not going to say that you're not going to fail right. You definitelywill still fail because everything constantly changes but it'll be betterequipped to hit the ground and pick up the speed and run with it. Then, if youwere to just go into it blind and not ask the questions to begin with yeahyeah completely, so let's just talk aboutt pitching investors,... know so getting we're still talkingabout this topic of getting funding, and you know one of the things that Ihear very often from VC firms is or even pitch competitions is that youknow roxy. I just sat through twenty pitches and I still only know what twoof them do: Yeah Right. So having that clearly the primacy and latency rightat the first one they heard in the last one. They heard right right, it's it'sexactly or it's not only that I don't know what they do, but when they tellme like Oh and it's a billion dollar market- and all I need is two percentand yeah. So so what has been some of your experience with pitching? You know,you've raised money, you've won competitions, so clearly you're doingsomething right. What are some of the key ingredients to a successful pitchdeck and that story element and some of the lessons along the way? Yeah it'sit's going to come back to being willing to change right. The thehardest part about pitching is after every single pitch, regardless of whoit is or what you've done or where you are now. An investor in the panel isgoing to sit down. Look at you and say: Why didn't you have this in your pit?You should have had that in your pitch and literally the investor before thatwas like. Why do you have this in your pitch? You should completely eliminatethat and shouldn't even talk about it right. You want to just pull your hair outright there. It's a it's less about modifyingand more about knowing your audience, knowing who you're going to be pitchingto and understanding what they're asking of you right it may be, they maycome at at you and say: Hey. You said the one. You only need twopercent of one billion and sure that's a really great top doubt approach, butI really want to know the bottom up be right. I want to know what you're goingto do tomorrow. What your milestones are, where you're going to be, what you're good to market strategyis, and then you talk to the next guy who heard the exact same pitch and he'slike. Why didn't you provide a story? I want to know what the patient is doing,who they're talking to the impact that it has in their life, and it's reallyabout trying to satisfy everyone without satisfying anyone, and it justboils down to who your market is. If you're going or who your audience is.If you're going to to pitch at a heavy social impact organization, then youneed to be stressing the impact that you have in patients lives the partnersthat you're working with that are already established their level ofimpact for specific deliverables in a socio economic sense and, if you're,going to a venture capitalist who's like well. How are you going to get mea ten return in the next three years? You better be certain that you have howyou're going to get them at an expert turning years right on your deck right,Yeah Yeah, I think, there's less cobalt in there too right you need at the endof the day, you really need to have a convincing story. You need to bebefriending the audience you need to be making direct eye contact and all ofthe things that go along with it. But if it's not a rigid format, I am a firmFIR believer of get through the pitch as fast as possible, because the Q NDAis going to drive the bulk of what you're looking at Oinou can get throughyour pitch in three to five minutes, and you only have fifteen minutes, tryto aim for the three to four minute mark and let the rest of the timebeqind from the people that want to know what you're doing it's a it's a. If you take the fullfifteen minutes- and you didn't answer a question and left no time for qn-then you're kind of shooting yourself... the foot there right and of courseyou know if it's origin, you have twelve minutes to pitch and if you'reonly doing a nine minute pitch, then that was a waste of our time and youcan't follow the format and then know that audience as well and make surethat you're pitching to that audience right right, right, yep, so Aaron wehave talked about so many amazing things here you shared so muchbrilliant wisdom with us with our audience. Is there anything else thatyou would want to share any other lessons? Learn that we haven't talkedabout any other pit falls to watch out for as we wrap up Piere. Oh, my God,there's like a thousand, and I just don't think I could pick just one. But I would say the biggest thing is a mentality if you'reentering entrepreneurial spaces- and you are trying to break into this spaceor you're already here and you've been doing it for a while, and you just wantsome reassurance, I would say I it's a mentality shift on the word. Failureright failure is not a bad thing right. Everyone's like Oh, I took this fundingand I went and validated this business model and I got to the tech stack andthen I put in the customers hands and it just completely failed. That's notthat's not necessarily a bad thing right. You now know what doesn't workand you can take that modify it change pivot. You have to be flexible. Youhave to be in this space and the only way that you are going to know how togrow and know what to change is to be comfortable with failure and to drivethat as fast as possible. Right. Yes, absolutely one hundred percent failfail. Many times fail fast, keep failing until you get to those Eurekamoments in between. I only negative if you don't learnsomething from right right. Yes, exactly so Aaron, how can folks get ahold of you if they want to follow up with you, learn more about what you'redoing and just connect with you in this community yeah. They can learn moreabout my company at www. Io Do care just the letter e the letter o t carecare. They can email me directly, I'm Aaron at Iota a Ron if they want to learn more about thecompany or dive deeper and happy to provide information. I'm happy to grantmy calendar so that they can book time to talk to me directly because there isthere's something. That's always missing from a face to face perspective,to butt, email and website are probably going to be the most effective ways toget a hold, I'm also on Linkedin. You can look me up. It's just Aaron Enton,Aaron, Ente and after the standard linked in chain of things, he are awesome. Well, thank you so much forjoining me today. I appreciate it yeah. Thank you for having me. It was a lotof fun and I now need to go back through. I watch maybe like two orthree of your past interviews and I think I need to go through and lookthrough all a hundred of women. Think I'll be my next podcast bince awesomeand feel free to give me some topics to talk about in the future. A awesome.Thank you so much. Thank you so much for listening. I knowyou're busy working to bring your life changing innovation to market, and Ivalue your time and attention to get the latest episodes on your mobiledevice automatically subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast tap likeapple podcast, spotify and stitcher. Thank you for listening, and Iappreciate everyone who shares the show with friends and colleagues, see you onthe next episode of Health, Innovators.

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