Ten Commandments: Thou Shalt Have Secret Sauce

This one is simple. You need to have some kind of technology or business model or marketing approach or all of the above that sets you apart from the rest and that is not easily copied.

For most software people this will most likely be in the technology. Ask yourself:

  • Can I do things that most people think cannot be done? This could be because I have invented some unique and prize-worthy algorithm. More often it will be because I am using new tools and technologies that were not available until recently. Or because I have done the grunt work to build a complex solution for an inherently hard problem. 
  • Do I have what people call an unfair advantage? E.g. 10 better, feaster, cheaper than existing approaches.
  • How hard would it be for somebody else to come up with an equivalent solution? 

If so, then your job is to turn what is probably a feature into a product. By identifying the customer problem that your approach addresses and then defining the product that delivers your technology. MVP first, whole product later.

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