I want to stretch your perspective about identifying your market and demand as well as what the possibilities are to validate what your product is. If you are doing something that is newer, innovative or something which has a different niche then it may require different angles before you start testing.
I always look at brands like Nihi Sumba, which built a $5000 per night luxury hotel in a place that had no hotels or tourists in the area and became one of the top hotels in the world. Or, at Google, which built a huge empire when no one was looking for information on the Internet or when people didn't really know how to use the Internet.
Yes, you should see what interest is available and validate your idea with identifying your market and your demand.
I also believe that market analysis can help you to position a product in a unique way and with identifying how you can launch in the market, as well as how to position and build traction, then allow you to test. There are different ways to create demand within your market, but it requires your ability to position your product / service.
So before you send surveys or validate, be clear about your message and what position you are taking in the market. Specifically, look at the following:
1. Trends that are taking place in your industry.
2. Trends and needs with your target market. Make sure you include the psychographics, as this will help you with the messaging and positioning of the brand.
3. Key competitors and how to position in relation to pricing, promotion and placement.
4. Risk Analysis and strategies to lessen the risk.
Once you are clear about what your market needs, your key messaging and how to position in the market, then take the next steps. This way, you are sure you are targeting the possibilities for demand.
This is important because if your message changes, it alters the responses from your target market. They don't just respond to the product, but also to the value you offer, what you stand for and the psychological and emotional pull that is behind what you offer. If you are clear about this, then it will change the outcome of your startup idea and your success.
I can help you identify your targets more and to build your idea development.