Building a product that people want: it sounds simple and it can be a simple process if you follow a structured approach to a dynamic process. Growth hacker marketing begins with a product that people want. It’s about finding a solution to a problem.
Once you have your product, it’s time to go to market. More than that, remain open to changing your product, business model and entire business. Do this until your product creates an explosive response from the first customers who experience it.
Case Study: AirBnB
Consider AirBnB. Co-founder, Brian Chesky had an idea to turn his loft into a bed and breakfast. He registered the domain name airbedandbreakfast.com. The founders then furnished the loft with an air mattress and offered their guests free breakfast in the morning. This wasn’t enough for the founders.
In an effort to capitalize on popular technology and design conferences, the founders went further by repositioning their service as a networking tool for attendees when hotels in the vicinity sold out.
They found success but still improved the idea further by pivoting to target travellers who were looking to avoid hotels altogether. This idea proved even more successful. Based on feedback, they dropped the free breakfast service, changed the name to AirBnB (from Air Bed and Breakfast), and redefined their offerings to suit any type of accommodation possible (including rooms, houses, castles and private jets).
Today, AirBnB enjoys over a million global bookings per year. Throughout the initial start-up process, the founders remained open to changing the concept of AirBnb. They changed and improved the concept until they landed upon its most successful form.
When you have a product or service idea: hone in on exactly what the new product is and what makes it special. Then, focus on improving it by looking for advice, feedback, and analysis from each aspect of the business and market. In this sense, you’re getting a sense of your Product Market Fit, backed by data and information.
Here’s some tangible and practical things you can do to determine your product market fit:
- Replace / swap people
- Rewrite your product
- Switch your market
- Don’t be afraid of saying no to your customers
- Get more funding
- Open up the product to feedback
Whatever you do, stop thinking of your product as static. Be open to change. Continuously strive to improve the product you’ve already created. Because after all, marketing without product market fit, is useless.
Here are some tools to help you analyze your product and assess its performance in the market:
- Google analytics
- Asking yourself: who is this product for? What problem does it solve? Why should customers use this product? Why should I use this product?
Once you’ve mastered the product-market fit, it’s time to bring in customers.
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