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Why Buy a Feature is GREAT at Prioritizing Features
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Why Buy a Feature is GREAT at Prioritizing Features


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Ever wonder why Buy a Feature is so great? Well... this deck will give you the answers!

Ever wonder why Buy a Feature is so great? Well... this deck will give you the answers!

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  • This is a sample of the chat logs from a set of games we played for VersionOne to prioritize their strategic backlog.
  • Transcript

    • 1. Why Buy a Feature Online is a Great Market Research Tool
    • 2. Summary
      You have a list of features. You want to keep this small so you can release quickly.
      We prioritize your features by engaging your customers in online games.
      Our method provides you with actionable results. You get:

      The reasons behind the ranking.
      A list of features ranked by your customers.
      Customer feedback that shapes and improves the features.
      And your customers enjoy the process!
    • 3. Agenda
      Traditional approaches to feature prioritization
      Problems with traditional approaches
      Buy a Feature
      Benefits of Buy a Feature
    • 4. Traditional Approaches to Feature Prioritization
      A single smart expert prioritizes on their own…
      A small team negotiates the list…
    • 5. Problems with Traditional Approaches
      Can the organization trust the instincts of the expert?
      Where is the “Voice of the Customer”?
      Small groups representing other organizations can slow down the process as they have to continually check with their organization.
    • 6. What We Want To Prioritize Features
      Lots of people actively engaged:Customers, Partners, Employees…
      A method that produces results!
      What are the priorities?
      What are the reasons behind the priorities?
      A method that improves the features!
      A method that customers will enjoy!
    • 7. How to Get a Group of People To Prioritize a List of features…And Have Fun Doing It!The Innovation Game® Buy a Feature
    • 8. Buy a Feature: A Collaborative Prioritization Game!
      12-20 items described in terms of benefits and costs
      5 to 8 players given limited budget
      Purchased items represent shared priorities
      Chat logs shape results
      A Game To
      Prioritize Stuff
    • 9. To illustrate how Buy a Feature works, let’s imagine you make coffee makers and you want to prioritize a list of potential features with a group of channel partners from around the world.
    • 10. First, You Will Load Items Into Our System
      “Shirt Sizes” help you quickly price your features – or you can enter a price directly!
      A list of features with prices. See any you like?
    • 11. Next, You’ll Invite Players To Your Game
    • 12. Players are given a limited virtual budget to buy features.
      Player bids.
      Highly desired features are purchased through collaborative negotiation.
      Players chat during the game providing you with rich insights that shape the features.
      Players Collaboratively Purchase features
    • 13. Analyze Results to Identify the “What and Why” of Important features
      Who purchased what?
      How much did they bid?
      Who negotiated with whom?
      What did they say?
      How did they shape the features?
    • 14. Play Several Games To Identify Trends
      We’ve played 35 Coffee Maker games with more than 150 people from around the world. Here are the results.
      The “red” bar means that in some games players spent MORE money than needed.
      These results are scaled based on the number of times an item was purchased.
      All data from the games can be downloaded into Excel for detailed analysis.
    • 15. And yes, it is FUN
      Chat log extracts from three games played to prioritize a product backlog.
    • 16. Ian Culling, VersionOne CTO says:
      “Our customers really enjoyed the experience and appreciated the opportunity to have influence on our roadmap and priorities – in an hour or less of their time.”
      “The rich information captured during the game helped us understand the basis for that prioritization”
      “The basic prioritized results held surprises”
      “The conclusions and recommendations derived from the results were incredibly insightful.”
    • 17. We Use a Tournament For Large Numbers of Features
      Game 1
      15 features
      Game 3
      Winners of games 1 & 2
      Game 2
      15 features

      Game 5
      Game 5
      16 features
      46 features…
      Example: Suppose you had 46 features. We would run a 5 game tournament. Since each game will have 7 players, you’ve just engaged 35 people!
    • 18. To Increase ConfidenceRun Several Tournaments
      Each Tournament produces a unique result based on the employees invited to play each game.
      Patterns always emerge!
      This is an example inspired by real features for a F500 company!
      Mobility Engagement
      is the obvious winner!
      Three Tournaments will engage more than 100 of your global customers!
    • 19. Tournament Results & Benefits
      What: A prioritized list features.
      Why: The reasons behind the priorities.
      Who: Instead of asking a few leaders to make the decision, our approach leverages the wisdom of your “customer crowd”.
      Engagement: Instead of a long and boring survey, your customers play a one hour game. They enjoy the chance to collaborate with other customers!
    • 20. Want To Learn More?
      Visit us at:
      Contact us at
      Call us at (408) 529-0319.
      Share this deck.