Lean Startup Case Studies Ed Roman @ed_roman [email_address] http://www.LeanMovement.com
About Me <ul><ul><li>Lean Startup Practitioner </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Author of Java book &quot;Mastering Enterprise J...
Presentation Overview <ul><li>Lean Startup Case Studies: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>PostageApp </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rocke...
Quick Overview of Lean Startup <ul><ul><li>Minimize waste by: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Generate idea </li></ul></ul>...
Example of Lean Startup in Action <ul><ul><li>John Prendergast at BlueLeaf has awesome example </li></ul></ul>
Example of Lean Startup in Action <ul><ul><li>More info:  http://johnprendergast.posterous.com </li></ul></ul>
PostageApp <ul><ul><li>Developed by The Working Group </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consulting company </li></ul></ul><ul><ul...
PostageApp <ul><ul><li>An &quot;Anti Case-Study&quot; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Few Lean Startup principles used </li></u...
PostageApp issues <ul><ul><li>Developed & tested from August 2010 - May 2011 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Found out too late...
PostageApp impact of not using lean <ul><ul><li>Impact: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Product re-engineered </li></ul></u...
Rocketr <ul><ul><li>&quot;Shareable notes&quot; for iPhone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multiple editors </li></ul></ul><ul>...
Rocketr process <ul><ul><li>Generated the idea </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Created a canvas </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Perf...
Rocketr canvas <ul><li>  </li></ul>
Rocketr <ul><ul><li>Customer interviews were done every week </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>20-30 minutes spent per custom...
Rocketr <ul><ul><li>Sample questions: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Do people understand the concept of a notebook? </li>...
Rocketr conclusions <ul><ul><li>Never implemented these features: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Chat functionality </li><...
Rocketr conclusions <ul><ul><li>Continuous deployment doesn't work on mobile </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Continuous deploym...
Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Developed by Max Cameron, Big Bang Technology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Idea: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul...
Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Engaged coffee shop owners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Drew wireframes </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul...
Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Problems with customers / coffee drinkers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>5 interviews in a row reject...
Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Pivot process </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Conducted 5 open-ended interviews with customers </li></...
Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Pivot Problems! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Coffee owners want to control &quot;free coffees&quot;...
Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Takeaway points: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Make sure you interview the &quot;right&quot; custome...
Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Motivation: A community for lean startup practitioners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>MVP &...
Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Posted daily &quot;lean startup news&quot; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customers subscri...
Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Conclusions: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>People don't care about lean startup news <...
Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Pivot to new site: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Focused on knowledge, not news </li><...
Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Tweet, blog, and visit to support us! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.LeanMov...
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Lean Startup Case Studies - Ed Roman

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The lean startup methodology is great in theory, but how about in practice? In this session, you will learn about lean startup case studies. These are real-world examples of the lean startup methodology in action. Lessons learned, including what worked (and didn't work) will be shown. From each case study, reusable best practices will be shown that you can use in the day-to-day operations of your company. This session is useful for any entrepreneur considering using the lean startup methodology in their startup.

Published in: Business, Technology

Lean Startup Case Studies - Ed Roman

  1. 1. Lean Startup Case Studies Ed Roman @ed_roman [email_address] http://www.LeanMovement.com
  2. 2. About Me <ul><ul><li>Lean Startup Practitioner </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Author of Java book &quot;Mastering Enterprise JavaBeans&quot; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Serial Entrepreneur </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>TheServerSide.com, The Middleware Company </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Ghostfire Games </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Startup company advisor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mentored entreprenerus at Capital Factory incubator </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Angel Investor </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Presentation Overview <ul><li>Lean Startup Case Studies: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>PostageApp </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rocketr </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Retriever </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lean Community Site </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Quick Overview of Lean Startup <ul><ul><li>Minimize waste by: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Generate idea </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Validate idea via customer interviews </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Model idea using a canvas </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Build Minimum Viable Product (MVP) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use metrics to refine results </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Pivot (alter idea) as necessary </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Involve customers every step of the way </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Analogies: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Agile development, but applied to a company </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Some similarities to the book &quot;The 4-hour workweek&quot; </li></ul></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Example of Lean Startup in Action <ul><ul><li>John Prendergast at BlueLeaf has awesome example </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Example of Lean Startup in Action <ul><ul><li>More info:  http://johnprendergast.posterous.com </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. PostageApp <ul><ul><li>Developed by The Working Group </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consulting company </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>&quot;Scratched own itch&quot; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The product: Outsourced engine for sending customized and personalized emails from a web application </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. PostageApp <ul><ul><li>An &quot;Anti Case-Study&quot; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Few Lean Startup principles used </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No Canvas </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No Customer Interviews </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No Lean UX </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No Continuous Deployment </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No Price Testing </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Few tools other than Google Analytics </li></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. PostageApp issues <ul><ul><li>Developed & tested from August 2010 - May 2011 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Found out too late: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>PostageApp assumed customer would handle the actual sending of the mail (SMTP) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>But -- many customers didn't have SMTP </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>This small oversight was very costly! </li></ul></ul></ul>
  10. 10. PostageApp impact of not using lean <ul><ul><li>Impact: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Product re-engineered </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>1000 hours wasted development </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Customers left service for competitors </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Wasted marketing efforts </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Lost 5-figures of revenue each month over 9 months </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Using lean principles now and headed in a good direction! </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Rocketr <ul><ul><li>&quot;Shareable notes&quot; for iPhone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multiple editors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Started from consulting company Jet Cooper </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Rocketr process <ul><ul><li>Generated the idea </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Created a canvas </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Performed Customer Interviews </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wrote an MVP in 99 days, as simple as possible </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Got a few hundred MVP testers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Refined MVP </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tools: KISSmetrics.  Tests run on a separate database for performance. </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Rocketr canvas <ul><li>  </li></ul>
  14. 14. Rocketr <ul><ul><li>Customer interviews were done every week </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>20-30 minutes spent per customer </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>7-10 customers per week </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>12 weeks total </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>36-50 hours spent on customer interviews </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Rocketr <ul><ul><li>Sample questions: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Do people understand the concept of a notebook? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Is this how you ’d be taking notes? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What would warrant you taking notes in the real world? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Price testing </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>This confirmed problem existed - led to quick UI mockups </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Rocketr conclusions <ul><ul><li>Never implemented these features: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Chat functionality </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Saved searches </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Discovery of notebooks </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Would have taken 3x as long to implement system </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Conclusion: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>36-50 Hours of customer interviews saved 3-6 months of effort </li></ul></ul></ul>
  17. 17. Rocketr conclusions <ul><ul><li>Continuous deployment doesn't work on mobile </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Continuous deployment doesn't work in fast-changing environments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Constantly engage customers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Work in a familiar environment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Get value out of small elements </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Developed by Max Cameron, Big Bang Technology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Idea: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Loyalty system for coffee shops on iPhone </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Came from Lean Startup Machine in Boston </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>2 parties involved: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Coffee drinkers </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Coffee shop owners </li></ul></ul></ul>
  19. 19. Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Engaged coffee shop owners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Drew wireframes </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Figured out pains and goals  </li></ul></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Problems with customers / coffee drinkers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>5 interviews in a row rejected solution </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No incentive </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Their presence indicates loyalty </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Entire product needs rethinking </li></ul></ul>
  21. 21. Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Pivot process </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Conducted 5 open-ended interviews with customers </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Got ideas, validated against larger sample </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New Idea </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Customers get free coffee by using loyalty system </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Solves the incentive problem </li></ul></ul></ul>
  22. 22. Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Pivot Problems! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Coffee owners want to control &quot;free coffees&quot; </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Part of their relationship with customers </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Computer automation == bad </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Preserving customer relationships are essential </li></ul></ul></ul>
  23. 23. Retrievr <ul><ul><li>Takeaway points: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Make sure you interview the &quot;right&quot; customer </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The customer's customer could be your actual customer </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Team is pursuing other opportunities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Is this bad? No </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>They learned quickly, and wasted very little time </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>This is a success -- reducing waste </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Failure == good </li></ul></ul></ul>
  24. 24. Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Motivation: A community for lean startup practitioners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>MVP &quot;RunningLeanHQ.com:&quot; </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Posted daily &quot;lean startup news&quot; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customers subscribed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>I interviewed first 10 subscribers: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Are you in a startup? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Funded? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Stage? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How familiar with Lean Startups? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How did you hear about the site? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Why are you interested in the site? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What do you think of the site so far? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What do you like / dislike about the site? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Have you returned to the site since your first visit?  Why? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What would cause you to visit the site regularly? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What type of content would you like to see on the site? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>etc </li></ul></ul></ul>
  26. 26. Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Conclusions: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>People don't care about lean startup news </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>They care about knowledge, and case studies </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Result: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>I saved potentially months or years of posting news </li></ul></ul></ul>
  27. 27. Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Pivot to new site: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Focused on knowledge, not news </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Case studies and knowledge now on live site </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.LeanMovement.com </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Case studies in the next few weeks: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>HighScoreHouse </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Heyo </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Dealkeeper </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Betable </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Would love feedback and contributions! </li></ul></ul>
  28. 28. Lean Startup Community <ul><ul><li>Tweet, blog, and visit to support us! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.LeanMovement.com </li></ul></ul></ul>

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