People think that to start a business/startup we need unique ideas and more money, and by doing hard work on that idea we will become successful.
This is the myth because before every successful company there was a small start.
Before YouTube, it was a dating site, not a video sharing site, and before Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg had created a “Facemash” website on which we can play the game Hot or Not.
After that, they change their website according to the customer requirement by doing some experiments, learning from the customer feedback. Now today we call these Youtube and Facebook.
Actually, the goal of every startup experiment is to discover how to build a sustainable business around the vision.
Most of the time we build the product and launch into the market, and we don’t get a good result because we have not understood the requirement of the customers.
Imagine a world in which you own the only telephone; it would have no value. Only when other people also have a telephone does it become valuable.
Also, a common tendency of product development is to build the solution before confirming that customers have the problem.
This idea will never work, we cannot assume the customer response before launching the actual product in the market.
In the 21st century, if we do not know who the customer is, we do not know what quality is. Before making any product your question should not be like that “Whether you can make this product or not? Instead, it should be, whether you should make such product or not?”
And there is more such reason due to which most of the startup fails, but the good thing is that Lean startup methodology gives you the solution to these problems.
So, let’s get started…
Build – Measure – Learn Feedback Loop save your time, money, energy, and help you to understand the customer.
If too much analysis is dangerous but none can lead to failure, how do entrepreneurs know when to stop analyzing and start building? The answer is the concept called Minimum Viable Product (MVP).
According to these principles, you have to first make a Minimum Viable Product (MVP). MVP is not your original product, it is only a testing model to analyze the market, customer review, and actual need of the product in the market.
Measure Customer Reaction
After launching your product, you have to measure customer reaction. When we enter into the Measure phase, the biggest challenge will be determining whether the product development efforts are leading to real progress.
Remember, if we are building that something that nobody wants, it doesn’t much matter if we are doing it on time and on budget.
After measure, you have to learn that, actually your ideas are working or not? Or you should need to change something for a better customer user experience?
Before Instagram, there was an app named “Burbun” in which there were many features in this app, and also one photo clicking feature.
But this app doesn’t get a good response from users. So, after applying the measure and learn principle they analyze that only the photo clicking feature user uses more rather than another feature.
So, by taking some risks app founder and co-founder take decisions and they remove all other features except photo clicking and worked more on that. Now we all called it Instagram.
In short, for Minimum Viable Product (MVP) you have to take only those 2, 3 features that users like most.
In other words, which of our efforts are value-creating give them the first priority and put it in MVP, and which are wasteful leave it.
Once you captured the response then you have to go for Pivot or Persevere.
Pivot or Persevere
In this, you have two options either go for Pivot or Persevere. By understanding how your user responds you have to choose this.
If you get a positive response from the user for your MVP then you have to choose Persevere. This means you can go with your idea and start making your product more focused.
But if you get negative feedback then you have to do Pivot. This means you have to do some necessary changes to make it user likely or you have to choose another path to execute your idea. For example, change your features or audience.
In other words, are we making sufficient progress to believe that our MVP is correct, or do we need to make a major change? That change is called a Pivot.
Why Pivot is important
Most of the time what happens, when people don’t get an appropriate result then they give up or go to try new ideas. They never think/choose the Pivot option. To become successful you have to choose the Pivot option.
Pivot plays an important role in your life. Sometimes you get negative feedback, but It’s ok because if we hadn’t built this first product mistakes and all, we never would have learned these important insights about customers.
You have to work on customer feedback because this is really a more important factor. This will help you to make your product more focused, to help to analyze marketing strategy, and some important statistics into the market.
So, finally whatever your idea you have to go with Build – Measure – Learn Feedback Loop, and then choose from the Pivot or Persevere.
So these are some good principles that I learned from “The Lean Startup” book by “Eric Ries”.
The Lean Startup is a new approach to business that’s being adopted around the world. It is a movement that is transforming the way companies are built and new products are launched.
The Lean Startup is about learning what your customers really want. It’s about testing your vision continuously, adapting, and adjusting before it’s too late.
Now it’s time to think Lean.