Product Strategy is the most important activity of a start-up before anything else. Many entrepreneurs make the mistake of thinking that it can be done by anyone and at any time during the company’s life. But it is not like this; product strategy must be created during the first months of startup and continuously improved as you progress and gain experience on how to improve your business model and which opportunities you should take advantage of or discard.
How to Build Your Product Strategy? Which Are Its Components?
To build an effective strategy, we need:
1.-Validated Customer Problem: If we do not know what our customers really want, we will never succeed in creating a great solution for them. Ask yourself these questions: Who are my customers? What problems do they have? What do they need? How can we solve their problem with our product?
2.-Business Model: This is the foundation of your startup and consists on how you plan to generate revenue, and the different resources you will need to acquire customers. Do not forget that there must be a clear goal for each unit of user acquisition. There are many business models inside the market; some examples include freemiums, subscriptions, consumables or transactional products, as well as affiliate marketing or lead generation.
3.-Differentiation: We may find several similar products in the market without any competitive advantage over them. However, if your product can offer something unique to your customer base this will ensure its success.
4.-What Is Your Competition: You should know what your competition is offering, and how you can differentiate yourself from them. What do they lack that you could add to become a better option?
5.-Copyrights: Copyrights are needed for any app, even if it’s free. Be aware that the slightest appearance of plagiarism will damage not only your business but also your personal brand.
6.-Validate Your Idea: Once you have done all this research and checked everything off your list , take time to meet with potential customers. If you cannot afford market research firms , reach out to friends and family to understand how interested they would be in buying or using your product . This way , we’ll see if our idea has in the market, which ultimately validates or denies.
7.-Build Trust: Customers are more willing to try something new if they trust the person behind it. Attract them by showing that you’re confident about your app but also realistic with your assessment of its strengths and weaknesses. Be straightforward in identifying what works and what needs fixing, and how you plan to fix it (including any changes made after testing).
8.-Attract Attention : Now is time for the marketing campaign of your app . Keep in mind that people tend to remember negative experiences , so be clear on who this product aims to solve problems for while keeping in mind that it might not be for everyone.
9.-Be Patient: Before investing money on developer’s licenses, spend some time learning code . Try Udacity’s Web Developer Nanodegree Program . If you have money, but no time, try Envato Studio. For only $29/month you’ll get access to 3000+ commercial assets and minutes of live chat support.
10.-Be Realistic: Before creating the app , ask yourself if people are ready for it. Are there enough users? Is this technology worth pursuing? If not, consider waiting for a better time before moving forward with your idea.
Some other mistakes to consider are:
1.-Market Your App : Now that your app is ready to go , think about how people can learn about it. Write down your marketing plan and make sure you know who will use the app , who will be targeted by advertisements, what benefits need to be communicated clearly and how you will track everything.
2.-Price It Right: Your app will only be as successful as the people who use it , so before going live, determine an appropriate price for your app. Set a low price to draw attention and then raise it later to increase revenue. Consider adding a freemium feature that users can access after paying a premium price.
3.-Keep Maintenance Low : Make sure your maintenance costs are kept as low as possible because those costs can quickly drain the money from your business if they aren’t properly managed. This includes all ongoing expenses such as hosting fees, online storage fees and development costs.
Product Strategy model is also about your development roadmap. It explains to investors, employees and customers how you plan to become successful in the market with your product (and ultimately helps everyone understand what changes need to be made within your strategies when something isn’t working).
It’s also good for evaluating whether or not the current strategy that you’re using is actually working. If it’s not, then you can make adjustments that will help keep you moving towards achieving your goals.