When first adopting a market-driven approach, it’s tempting to think that prospective customers will be able to give you all the answers and tell you what they need.  They’re the ones with the pain, so they’ll know the best way to solve it, right?  Unfortunately, it’s not quite that easy.  Interviewing five prospective customers will probably result in 10+ completely different suggestions.  If you blindly followed their suggestions, your product would end up confused and bloated.  Of course, it’s always helpful to understand a customer’s pain and how she solves the problem currently.  However, after this is understood, you should introduce your solution.  Mockup your idea in the form of an MVP and put it in front of potential customers.  In addition to getting general feedback, ask them what sucks.  Ask them what they hate and will never use. This serves two purposes: 1) as long as you don’t get defensive, this helps people give honest and unbiased feedback, which is crucial; and 2) it will give you the opportunity to cut the fat out of your MVP.  Your mission is to get to market with the leanest possible product, knowing that you will iterate based on actual product usage.  Don’t build more, build less and go fast.

Matt Sand

Author Matt Sand

Passionate about making a difference through innovation and entrepreneurship.

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