In this talk I gave at ProductTank Singapore towards the end of 2016, I parsed the steps required to take a product from conception to delivery, with a strong slant toward the business of products. Throughout my experience as a product leader, I’ve spent much of my time and effort optimizing how to align deliverables with business objectives, and I’ve tried to share that in this talk.
Find a Market You Can Win
Chances are you’re the little guy. You have limited time, money, and human power. Rather than focusing on competing against all of the world to attract the world’s customers, find a market that you can win. Put on your product marketing hat and start to identify smaller undeserved markets to plant your flagpole – world domination can come later.
Identify Your Ideal Customer
Get into your customer’s skin (metaphorically only, please) and truly understand their pains and goals. You’ll eventually start to refine what types of customers you want to sell to and eliminate bad fit customers that will take time and energy away from your product, sales, marketing, and support efforts. Remember, you get to choose your customers.
Build a Model, Then Build a Product
Your product is your business model. Understand how to bring your product to market, define what success looks like, and ensure appropriate metrics are in place to help make quick and iterative decisions. Then execute on the model and be prepared to adjust it along the way. Products rarely reach success by following a straight line.
Your product vision is your company’s vision. The product needs to be sold, marketing, and supported by your organization. That means everyone needs to understand what you’re building and why it’s valuable.