Building An MVP The Lean Startup Way
Congratulations on putting that idea to work, yes, it takes a lot of guts to get on the path to entrepreneurship. Okay, so problem number one! You probably are flooded with too many ideas and advice. But the ground reality is that you don’t want too many of them to screw up your venture, so calm down now. Of all the advices that people have given you, you might want to check the ones given below.
The vein of any business is customers. Is your idea good enough to drive customers? Is there a demand for your idea out there? If there is, what target audience are you catering? These questions will build the foundation of your business and give it a sturdy beginning.
“User experience is everything. It always has been, but it’s undervalued and underinvested in. If you don’t know user-centered design, study it. Hire people who know it. Obsess over it. Live and breathe it. Get your whole company on board.”
– Evan Williams, Co-Founder, Twitter
Evan Williams said it right, user experience is everything! Your idea and implementation should revolve around your users. Too many startups begin to build a product without ever letting their customers use it. Let your customers be a part of your business since day one, let potential target audience know you’re building a so and so product. It will determine if the prospective customers will be interested or not.
Go out in the market and start asking people what they feel about your idea. Conduct surveys and talk to them face to face if you have the opportunity. You’ll really get to find the core of the problems; start working on their solution right away.
Fail Fast , Move Forward , Iterate
Start building, don’t wait. This is the key to making a name in your industry. You can correct the course as you go along. Don’t believe us? Read the quote:
“You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing and falling over.”
– Richard Branson, Virgin Group Founder
Developing a MVP (Minimum viable product) solely means continuously improving the product for higher user satisfaction. That’s how your business will grow, that’s how you will save tons of capital. The question is, how will you do it? We tell our fellow entrepreneurs to work smarter instead of harder. Your whole team should be aware of the fact that, apart from saving your hard earned capital, their duty will be to tailor-make an efficient process which revolves around the development of a super responsive product.
Objectives, Not Features
“A thousand no’s for every yes”
– Apple Inc.
Having the right focus and prioritizing what’s most important will help you build an effective MVP.
Just keep in mind to make it as simple as possible. At this MVP stage, it’s not about the product, it’s about your objectives. There is no need to add features which aren’t necessary for the beginning. Just find the features which will help you realize if you actually solve your customer’s problem the way you intended to.
Measure this impact, learn from it, and tweak your product until you find the traction points where your customers get actually addicted to your solution. You should know in advance what you want to learn, not to get all over the place. This is the Build-Measure-Learn feedback loop, that will help you hustle in the right direction.
Do It Right Or Die Trying
Here is the catch; user satisfaction will not come in the first attempt. However, we believe that it is not impossible.
Most startups which start building their products end up all frustrated. The reason behind this lies in the fact that they’re unsuccessful in creating a measurement system which analyzes the process in detail. If you are unable to find out about how well your prototype is doing, then you might as well consider that all efforts may go down the drain.
You need to identify weaknesses in the MVP and without any delay, start working on a better MVP based on the feedback. If needed, set a new value proposition, new measurements systems, to take your product with a new outlook.
Stay Focused And Get Things Done
Together, we will be focusing on strategies that will focus on this customer understanding. But hey, don’t forget, you’ll have to hustle hard to get your voice heard! That’s the only way it is done, don’t forget the old school lesson of entrepreneurship, which is (drumroll please!!), persistence of course.
So get yourself together now and be proud, you’re about to do something critically challenging. If all this rings a bell, check out our portfolio and see what we’ve done for entrepreneurs like you.