Are we solving a problem other people find worth paying for?
Source: Steve Blank
- The Minimal Viable Product (MVP) is a way to test your hypotheses (does not mean the solution will be easy to build). The main purpose of the MVP is to see whether you should build it, and if it is solving a problem worth paying for.
- Only after you have determined the hypotheses, you then need to test that hypothesis with your MVP. Some ways of testing the hypothesis include:
- Customer Interviews: Unscripted discussions with customers designed to extract information about the problem your trying to solve (exploratory process, not a sales pitch).
- Landing Pages: The landing page allows you to; ‘test your product against real-world market expectations’. However, when deploying the landing page (presentation of features, pricing options etc.), you need to validate learning (analytics).
- A/B Tests: Allow you to test the effectiveness of two versions of the product, service, marketing copy etc. in order to determine which performs best.
- This process can be continued by listing down the problems you assume your product will solve and then asking what the customer thinks about them as well as how they would rank each problem.
- Crowdfunding: Kickstarter and Indiegogo platforms are a great place to run MVP tests. However, they require a compelling narrative, ex-plainer videos and rewards (incentives).
- Others: Blog (a good way to build an audience for validation), paper prototype (a mock-up of actual product), Single-feature-MVP (Foursquare let users check-in to the social network with their location, before testing other features).
Get Out of Office
Building a MVP is hard work (multiple iterations and validations), learning requires significant investment of time and energy. The most important objective is to figure out if the effort you’re putting in is worth it:
Continually testing and validating your hypotheses!
Minimal Viable Product (6:00)
MVP tests hypotheses about market and customers, before you spend too much time (money), creating & shipping product.