EiR & uTeam Continuing Education: Minimum Viable Product (MVP) Mentality


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At Wasabi Ventures, we are dedicated believers in a lean startup mentality. In as much, we want our engineers, designers, and business people to understand that speed at the early stage of a startup is more important than perfection. While we want to design and build great technology, we need to move fast and get feedback from users. This class will cover the minimum viable product (MVP) mentality that Wasabi Ventures has and what that means to our engineers.

This is all part of Wasabi Ventures Academy.

Published in: Technology, Education
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EiR & uTeam Continuing Education: Minimum Viable Product (MVP) Mentality

  1. 1. EiR & uTeam Continuing Education: Minimum Viable Product (MVP) Mentality AN INNOVATIVE AND DYNAMIC APPROACH TO VENTURE CAPITAL AND INCUBATION
  2. 2. MVP = Our Approach to a New Venture • At WV, our concentration is startups from the idea forward • KEY NOTE: We never know what is going to work. • Our approach is to MVP and see what the market thinks • WV MVP Attributes: • • • • • Measurable infrastructure 3 months or less from idea-to-launch Nice UIX, but not perfect UIX Wash, Rinse, and Repeat It actually works!!!
  3. 3. Things That Are Important • Measurable Infrastructure • • • • GA DB elements Surveys Crazy Egg • Good UIX • Wireframe pre-design • All elements mocked up before coding • Building a mailing list and social media following, including a branded blog • Talk to customers via phone and/or email
  4. 4. Things That Are Not Important • Perfect UIX that wins awards • Technical infrastructure to support millions or users or tons of data • Full-blown admin control panel • Dynamic CMS system for main site (we run WP for all blogs) • Don’t spend any cash on marketing – get users via hustle and creativity
  5. 5. Speed is More Important than Scale, Perfection, and/or Pretty • During an MVP, we need to build something that proves the business model – i.e. will people use it/pay for it • Proof is always measured in small numbers • UIX is always important, but even ugly things get used if they solve a problem – e.g. Craig’s List • WV assumes ALL OF THE CODE will have to get re-done as things eventually move from MVP to the build process • Don’t worry about perfection think about proving the model
  6. 6. PBworks as a Case Study • David Weekly wrote the first version in a weekend at a hackathon • 7,000 people used it in the first few weeks! • David built a team and raised an initial round very quickly • As the model morphed, every line of code and every UIX aspect was ditched and re-written dozens of times • Now, over 5MM people use it monthly and the product is nothing like the original
  7. 7. Fun Exercise = Wayback Machine • Wayback Machine takes snapshots of Web Sites • Watch how they morph as they learn their business model • Example: http://web.archive.org/web/20130224130318/http://www.applykit.c om/
  8. 8. Key Take Aways • Move fast and don’t worry about perfection • Measure everything • Talk to users and customers • Don’t spend cycles/resources on ANYTHING that doesn’t directly prove the business model
  9. 9. If you are interested or know some interested in the class, email wvacademy@wasabiventures.com