Last Saturday (September 24th) I made a Tweet defining what for me are the 3 pillars of a successful product building.
It's no secret that to have a successful product, you need to give society what they want but don't yet know how to get it.
Consulting to find recurring pain points & issues
Thomas Edison once explained his approach to innovation very interestingly:
“I find out what the world needs. Then, I go ahead and invent it.”
And is this is what the first pillar is based on.
Take a look around at the products and service you are currently using or surrounded by, and ask yourself, "Why are they there?"
The answer yet, it's pretty simple. They are solving a problem or filling a need that you would otherwise be dealing with.Consulting to find pain points and issues is the most important part of the process. Without research, you probably would be dealing with an issue that has been solved on a great scale before.
How to identify a problem to solve?
Just look around you. What daily experiences drive you crazy or are full of inefficiency or needless complication in your life? Those are the problems that need to be solved.
Over the last few years, along with my team, I've been developing different tools to help solve issues that affect not only people related to me but a general audience.
The perfect example would be MinimalHero, a lightweight Chrome Web extension that helps people minimize distractions & keep focus on the things that matter by preventing multi-tasking and mindless feed-scrolling.
Pain point? The distractions of the internet world while working; social network feeds that never end, and even multitasking.
I think we can both agree that everyone can relate to this. Once you have identified a problem, this is where pillar number 2 comes in.
Build educational material to attract target demographic
The easiest and best way to attract a specific group of people is, undoubtedly, content.
As Jason Brain, Creative Strategist for EveryoneSocial says,
"Educational content that is unconditionally proffered by a company is a low-cost means to enable brand exposure and foster engagement with the general public, prospects, competitors, and existing clients or customers."
When people identify with your content, they begin to interact with it, building an audience, creating discussion topics. Your idea will now begin to gain validation within a specific demographic, and once you identify what does your audience craves for, you can move forward right into the next pillar.
Build the product and launch it to the tribe that you've gathered.
Once you have all that information, the rest and last step will be a piece of cake, right? Well... Not exactly that.
After you build a tribe of people hungry for a solution (your product), congratulations! You're only a step away from launching. At this point, you understand your user needs and pain points, and now it's time to build an MVP.
The question is, "What solution are you going to build for them?" This is the moment you go through a brainstorming session, taking into account the valuable information your "tribe" has given you.
For that, I like this Atlassian article that covers "How to run a brainstorming session that actually produces good ideas."
Up with the ideas? Time to build, launch, and optimize!
When building a product it is important to reduce risks at all costs, you don't want to get stuck in the middle of the process, do you?
How to decrease the risk of failure and build a successful product?
Even if you have what you think is a great idea, customers may not think in the same way as you do.
You increase your chances of success by letting them validate your ideas on the run.
Google X co-founder, Tom Chi, has an interesting approach to this, with a technique they call "Home Team / Away Team." This framework allowed them to ask the public what they wanted, and adapt those desires in real-time.
The goal of a Minimum Viable Product is to create something quickly and test it, remember to always give special attention to your audience's opinion.
Creating a product is a tough journey, and time is a key factor in the process. You don't want to waste time building a product that doesn't cover your customer needs. User feedback will drive your product success!