This course was created by EntrepreneurNOW. We are please to offer this training in our library.
- Why launch soon
- Why investors care how you’ll get to market
- Nailing down the core elements
- Product vision vs. company vision
- Emphasizing unique differentiators
- Getting to an MVP
- Developing a product roadmap
Skill Level Beginner
- In the end, a vision without the ability to execute is probably a hallucination, Steve Case, AOL. I want to make sure your vision comes to life and it's not just a hallucination, and building your product or service is where the rubber hits the road. This is where you actually can get a product, build it, and get it to market, and that's so critical to the overall process. Your product strategy is the culmination of how you define your product or service, what the vision is around your product or service, the roadmap for future development, and most importantly, the execution. How are you actually going to execute on your product or service? So what's the first step? The first step is to find your product or service. We've got to be really clear about what you're actually building, and you've got to be really clear about it otherwise you're going to go off in all these different directions and never get the product out to market. So in order to get a product out to market faster, we want to make sure that you've got clarity about exactly what you're going to build. So let's ask some of the questions. First question is what is your offering? It's a very basic question, but what is your product or service? You want to make sure that's defined. Second thing is what is your customer actually buying? Make sure you understand what they get because they're going to want to understand what they get. How are they going to benefit from whatever you're delivering? Very important. How are you going to make it available to them, and when are you going to make it available to them? And also, the ultimate goal of, what is the ultimate goal of your product or service? Very critical. Now a very important idea that I want to make sure that you understand that almost all entrepreneurs want to make sure their product is perfect before they show it to the world before it launches, and you have that innate inside of you. Most entrepreneurs don't want to launch something until it's perfect, and you've got to get out of that mindset because I will tell you right now it's better to actually launch a good product faster than it is to launch a perfect product sometime in the distant future or maybe never, and a lot of cases, that's actually what happens with businesses. They actually never launch the product because the entrepreneur just keeps making it more and more perfect. The problem is is that when you try to make something perfect, you're not going to get it perfect because you've got to get it in the hands of the customer, and they're going to tell you what they want. So that customer feedback coming in to your product is a critical process. So I think it's better, always better, to get something out there, get the feedback, and then rev the product or revise the product accordingly. Now, the one caveat here is the product still has to be good. It has to be complete enough to where you can actually get it out and somebody can use it, and they can have a good experience with it. You don't want to launch too early or so early that customers have problems with it, it's buggy if its software, or it just doesn't work overall. That would ruin your reputation. So I don't want you to do that. The sooner you get the product out there, the better it is. Now I'm also a big believer, by the way, a byproduct of this is you're going to create cashflow. So the earlier you get it out there, the more you're actually going to be able to fund your company with the product or service that you're delivering. I think that's really important. So here's the great thing. This entire process is called the minimum viable product. It's a very important concept that I want to make sure you understand, or MVP. You might have actually heard that term before. It's very popular, and it actually started off in the software industry, but it actually applies to everybody and everything, and I've been using it for many, many years. Every business I start, I start, and I always have to say to myself what is my minimum viable product? Because our inclination is to build everything and then launch. We don't want to do that. Your MVP, or your minimum viable product, actually says what do you need in order for customers to receive value from what you're delivering? And then you can start selling, and that's really the definition of how I want you to be thinking about this. When your customer receives value, that's a great thing for them, and you're going to get it out there. They're going to get value, and you're going to get cash which is very important. Also, you're going to get a ton of feedback. So I do actually recommend that you do this in fairly quick succession. What I mean by that is get the product out there, get the feedback, and rev it quickly. One of the values of you being a small entrepreneurial startup is that you're agile, and so being able to move through this process is a great thing. You think about your competitors or your bigger competitors which could take years to actually iterate through a process like this. Where you as a small entrepreneur just getting started, you have the luxury of being very agile. So I want to make sure that's embedded into your entire product development process. We actually get that from the software industry as well. It's been used for years, and it's very, very effective. The key that I want you to remember is that it has to be something that delivers value to the customer and that they'll pay for.