How to Fail to Find Product Market Fit
Here is a prescription on how to guarantee your startup will fail to find product-market fit.
- Ask customers what they want
- Build for big markets
- Promise big returns
1. Ask customers what they want
For those of you who want to build a product customers say they want to buy but may never use, I recommend asking your customers these questions:
- What kind of solution would you like?
- What are your favourite features in other products?
- What solutions do you think other people in your company would buy?
Invite your customers to attend your design workshops to share and sketch out their solutions.
Listening to your customers’ wish lists will guarantee unlimited features for your product roadmap.
2. Build for big markets
To create hockey stick forecast models, your product will need to serve everyone in a big market.
Focus on finding a v1 solution that will serve as big of a user-base as possible. Repeat step one when discovering your v1 solution.
If you have already found your v1 solution then assume your solution is transferable to customers across the entire and adjacent market. Market and promote your solution’s benefits to everyone and everywhere.
3. Promise big returns
To ensure your product resonates with companies and the industry, promise your solution will deliver huge dollar benefits and current company objectives. Overpromising will help close sales faster and get buyers excited.
Build for demo-ability over usability. Focus your roadmap on features for sales demos with mock data promoting financial benefits, especially if your end-users aren’t the main buyers.
If you have no real customers using your product to solve real problems, focus marketing case studies on ROI benefits (it doesn’t matter if they were achieved using your product or not).
How to find product market fit?
Conversely, for those who want to improve their odds of finding product market fit, here are two articles that may help: