Now that social networks are integrated into products, it’s harder to break through the noise. Every app has a share to Facebook/Twitter link. Used to be 1M registered users is sizable, now you need to have 5M to be significant.
Different types of markets:No clear leader yet, a few competitors: define the market and announce where the market is going. Mature market: look for technology and consumer behavior disruptions that large companies can’t adapt to.Verticalization: what has worked in one industry adapted to another.
Only top 3 players matter in a market. Market leader will always command a premium.
GA - product management for entrepreneurs
Product Management forEntrepreneurs Wan Li Zhu Fairhaven Capital Blog: hacktrend.com March 2012 1
Product Development Lifecycle Idea Feedback Spec Test Build 4
The Constraints of Software Projects Choose 2 of the 3 Features Speed Quality The winning combo: Quality + Speed (less features) ? 5
Waterfall vs. Lean – the oversimplified version Waterfall Lean Philosophy Know what you’re Don’t know what’s doing before you do right until market it. Plan, spec, validates it, so develop, test, ship. throw it out there and iterate fast. Origin Software on CDs The web 2.0, SaaS Where Large, old school Startups software companies Suitable for Enterprise Consumers customers 6
Waterfall vs. Lean – striking the right balance• Instead of long specs, aim for high level requirements and more wireframes• Agile process (i.e. SCRUM, pair programming) + regular triage to manage bugs• Prototype - test in small user groups to gather feedback and iterate quickly. A/B testing• Shift more towards a waterfall method when working with an outsourced development shop 7
Roles in a Technology Organization Starting out: As the company grows: • (CTO) • CTO / VP Product / • Developer Architect • Outsourced UX • Developer • Designer (UX) • Test (QA) • Operations • Biz-specific roles: User Education, Community Mgr 8
What is a spec? • Wireframes – storyboards to quickly iterate on features and UI • Scenario – describes a user with a complex goal performing multiple actions (use cases) • Use case – a sequence of steps performed by a user that represent features in the software • Requirements – discrete must-haves that the product must meet 9
Spec Example:• Scenario: Joe is a college student and wants to stay on top of what his friends are up to. He first looks up his friends by their email address, then adds them, and once he’s connected checks regularly for their status updates.• Use cases – Add friends – Approve friend request – Monitor newsfeed – Comment on newsfeed item• Requirements – Must be able to look up people by email, by name, by school, etc. – Must be able to add friends (send invite to connect) – Must allow user to approve (or disapprove) of a request to friend – Must allow users to update their status with text, picture, location, etc – Newsfeed must be cached and updated on increments of X minutes – Etc etc 10
User Flow DiagramQuick way to define user experience,get sense of complexityForces you to flush out the productlogic and flowCan be created with MS Visio, LucidChart (online) 11
Storyboard (wireframe) Keep it low-fidelity! Use for brainstorming, debating functionality, UI design iterations Google Search 1. Type in search term 2. Click search 12
Spec drives dev, test, marketing Architecture / dev design Dev Time/effort estimates Code + documentation QA plan / test cases Spec Test Performance / scalability Security Scenarios Use cases Product demo video Features Marketing Product positioning Prioritization Marketing collateral UX wireframes Support documentation 13
Spec Best Practices• Stay organized: each scenario contains multiple use cases, each use case contains multiple requirements.• Prioritize (high, med, low) all scenarios, use cases, and requirements - you will need to cut features to make deadlines. When cutting, keep track of dependencies.• Other requirements - Don’t forget requirements that are outside of explicit use cases, i.e. security, scalability.• Outsourced development - More detailed specs. Make sure code is well-documented, ask for developer design docs. 14
Bug curve QA to a point, then release and fix/iterate. SaaS/agile - release earlier and more often. # of Bugs Enterprise – need a certain level of quality Consumer – users can do some of the testing, fix rapidly Track bugs using a system i.e. FogBugz Fix/iterate Feature Release Time Complete 15
Part 2:Business Models / Marketing(for Consumer Internet Startups) 17
Factors for success in consumer internet• Viral built into product – Sharing/collaboration is baked into the core use case (photo sharing)• Value increases with more use – Makes it harder to leave (Dropbox)• User engagement and repeat use – High # of vectors for engagement (Facebook), universal tool (Google)• Low user input to value ratio – Minimum friction to get to value• Distribution/buzz – Partnerships, celebrities, prominent investors• High value user demographics – Female, teens, wealthy• Adapting a successful model to new channel/device 18
Network effect Search User traffic + Users Videos Traffic content Users Users Advertisers Advertisers AppsAdvertisers (Adwords) Publishers Publishers (Adsense) What are the viral loops in your model? 19
Go-to-market • Staging your big vision – Plan for platform but simple features first - consumers can only absorb so much. • Multi-sided platforms: Create standalone value first – Focus on the side of the platform that is more desirable (to the other side of the platform) • Seed the platform – Trusted networks (i.e. universities) – Aggregate existing content – Recruit content creators • Price @ free to capture market – Only works if you can monetize through other means (!) – Pricing at free also deters new entrants 20
Positioning• Be careful of “we’re more ____ than _____” and “we do ____ plus a lot more”• Differentiate/position by… • Type of market affects – Vertical positioning – Device/channel (mobile) – Emerging - define – Audience – Fragmented/crowded - – Geography aggregate – Mature/declining - disrupt• Against large incumbents – Misaligned economics – Feature gaps – Too small to move needle 21
Creating and sustaining momentum• Regular new product launches – Creates PR buzz and educates users• Viral built into product – Lowers user acquisition cost and sustains PR momentum – OK to explicitly incentivize users to invite others• Search engine optimized landing pages – Auto-generate content to attract organic search traffic• Content focus and community development – Flavor of the day/month, popular trends• Partnerships – Google/Facebook don’t need your 1M users, they need better ways to monetize existing user base. 22