In the world of SaaS enterprise applications, starting a successful implementation project is all about the need for speed. Customers have subscribed and are itching to work with the software. Implementation partners want to quickly take that next step the change management process, which requires the customer getting familiar with the software.
So setting your fledgling project on the road to success depends on getting an instance up quickly (among other things). Call it "Conference Room Pilot 1" or a "sandbox" or "the staging instance" or whatever else you like, it's important to get an instance up as quickly as possible. In all honesty, it does not need to be populated with customer data, customer configurations, nor customer business processes. In fact, it is usually better to put up a very plain "vanilla" instance and encourage the customer to try out the business processes baked into the software in order to limit or eliminate customizations later in the project.
An important early step in the sprint from subscription to first valuable use...get an instance up as quickly as possible. Embrace the need for speed.