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MVP/Experiments talk at SVA IxD program

from a talk I gave for the School of Visual Arts IxD program's Entrepreneurial Design class

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Experiments & MVPs




            Giff Constable Jan 2012
who am I?

     partner @ Proof
     early stage specialist
     skillset generalist
     16 years of startups
     2 years as a fine artist
     co-organizer, lean startup meetup



http://proof-nyc.com          http://giffconstable.com
reducing waste
things people don't want or need
things that have no business potential




                        The core of lean startup
how to reduce waste?
validate early and often
get the formula right before you scale




                         The core of lean startup
not just for startups
for any innovative project




                The core of lean startup
“lean startup” goes beyond
     talking to customers

It's about running experiments

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MVP/Experiments talk at SVA IxD program

  • 1. Experiments & MVPs Giff Constable Jan 2012
  • 2. who am I? partner @ Proof early stage specialist skillset generalist 16 years of startups 2 years as a fine artist co-organizer, lean startup meetup http://proof-nyc.com http://giffconstable.com
  • 3. reducing waste things people don't want or need things that have no business potential The core of lean startup
  • 4. how to reduce waste? validate early and often get the formula right before you scale The core of lean startup
  • 5. not just for startups for any innovative project The core of lean startup
  • 6. “lean startup” goes beyond talking to customers It's about running experiments
  • 7. Running Experiments 1. have a hypothesis to test 2. brainstorm a few different tests, offline and offline 3. try to break the tests into even smaller units of work 4. choose a test and set a goal 5. run the test (try to hit the goal) 6. review results and make a decision (a. confirmed belief; b. iterate test; c. iterate business)
  • 8. Examples manual delivery (aka “wizard of oz”)
  • 9. Examples “concierge” (i.e. be the software)
  • 10. Examples pre-sales (with LOI, discounts)
  • 11. Examples landing page (with calls to action)
  • 15. a minimal viable product is not a point release it’s a rolling series of iterations
  • 16. a minimal viable product is for learning, not launching find product optimize promote market fit conversion* * for enterprise-focused startups, replace with “find your repeatable sales process”
  • 17. the best experiments digital *or* analog creative focused measured as small as possible btw “as small as possible” != “small”
  • 18. lead with vision use experiments to reality check against the market vision is essential -- you can’t A/B test your way to greatness
  • 19. experiments are often not definitive and results have to be balanced against vision and judgement but that doesn’t mean we should stick our heads in the sand I don’t buy knee-jerk excuses to avoid this stuff
  • 20. Business Assumptions Exercise can be found at http://giffconstable.com
  • 21. I believe that my customers have a need to ________________________________________. keep it concise! Customer-Needs Assumption
  • 22. This need can be solved with ________________ _________________________________________. Solution Assumption
  • 23. My initial customers will be _________________ ________________________________________. describe the person(s) Initial Customer Assumption
  • 24. The #1 value a client wants to get out of my service is: ________________________. The client can also get these additional benefits: ___________________ and __________________. Value Proposition Assumptions
  • 25. I will acquire the majority of my users/customers through _______________________ and ________________________. Marketing Assumptions
  • 26. I will make money by _______________________ _________________________________________. Business Model Assumption
  • 27. My primary competition will be ______________ and ______________. We will beat them in the market due to __________________ and __________________. Competition Assumptions
  • 28. My biggest product risk is ___________________. We will solve this through ____________________ ______________________________. Product Risk Assumptions
  • 29. What assumptions does my business hold, that if proven wrong, could cause the business to fail? 1._______________________________________. 2._______________________________________. 3._______________________________________. 4._______________________________________. 5._______________________________________. Critical Risk Assumptions
  • 30. Prioritize your assumptions High Risk prioritize here Known Unknown Low Risk
  • 31. Running Experiments 1. have a hypothesis to test 2. brainstorm a few different tests, offline and offline 3. try to break the tests into even smaller units of work 4. choose a test and set a goal 5. run the test (try to hit the goal) 6. review results and make a decision (a. confirmed belief; b. iterate test; c. iterate business)
  • 32. Thank You email:giff@proof-nyc.com twitter: giffconstable blog: http://giffconstable.com site: http://proof-nyc.com