You are competing for attention

The average person can hold between five to seven items in working memory. You are probably using a couple of those items already. The takeaway – especially when you’re asking customers to do something for you – is for you to ask them to do as few steps as possible. The first step to getting…

The next product wave will be invisible

This might seem strange, but in my experience some of the best products I depend on are invisible. What do I mean by invisible? I mean that I give then access to information and they provide value with no work on my part. “Set it and forget it” apps or services are the most obvious…

The magic in products is knowing what to leave in

Reading Mark Suster’s excellent post on product design left me with this thought – what if more products were literally designed by the customer? As a thought experiment, leave aside any skepticism you have about the customer making bad choices (e.g. Faster horses vs. a Model T Ford) and imagine what these products might look…

Your first MVP is Wrong

This essay is written as part of the Startup Edition project – check out the other essays here. It would be awesome if your first iteration of a minimum viable product (MVP) perfectly addressed your target market segment, delivered great value to your customers, and you never had to change it again. However, that’s not what…

The Minimum Viable Beta Program, and how to build it.

Let’s say you’re starting a new company, feature, or product. You have an idea that you want to test with some beta customers. So what would you do today to “get out of the building” (in best Steve Blank Lean Startup style) once you’ve done some initial customer development to determine your Minimum Viable Product…