Product Discovery Best Practices

Product Discovery link

Product Discovery link

The following comes from https://www.producttalk.org/2018/08/effective-product-discovery/.

Empathy For Your Audience

  1. Get specific: Persona that represents your specific target user or customer.
  2. Ignore everyone who doesn't match your ideal user or customer.
  3. Obsessively learn about your target customer's needs and challenges.

Explore The Problem Space Indefinitely

Discovery is messy. It's non-linear. Good discovery is continuous. The day we stop being curious about our customers is the day our competitors start catching up.

  1. Keep interviewing.
  2. Actively listen for what you got wrong.
  3. Reframe, reframe, refranme: as we learn more, contiually reframe our understanding of the problem space.

Map Your Way To Clarity

Maps come in all shapes and sizes: experience maps, customer journey maps, life of the customer maps, story maps, process maps, network maps, and so on.

  1. Start with individual maps: this helps to surface the individual perspectives of the team.
  2. Align around a shared map: After exploring the distinct perspectives on the team.
  3. Map at different scopes: Don't stop at one map. Map the lift of your customer, a typical day, a specific experience. Map their journey through your product for a specific use case.

Use Theory As Inspiration (Draw From First Principles)

If our innovations leads to a better solution, great, but too often it merely leads to a different solution. Different isn't necessarily better.

  1. Read broadly: You can’t use theory as inspiration or draw from first principles if you don’t know any theory or first principles. I encourage product teams to read broadly. Read about human behavior. Pull from many disciplines: psychology, biology, sociology, linguistics, anthropology, philosophy, and so on.
  2. Don't reinvent the wheel.
  3. Distinguish between human truths and technology truths: Human truths are things like cognitive biases and theories about human behavior like reciprocity and social contagion. Human truths are slow to change. Technology truths are fast to change. Use human truths as inspiration. Account for technology truths in the short term, but don’t expect them to hold stable over time.

Co-Create Solutions That Meet The Unique Needs Of Your Audience

  1. Map solutions to specific opportunities.
  2. Get feedback early and often.
  3. Let your customers design with you: don't limit customer roles to feedback. Let them create with you.

Get Out Of The Building

A term phrased by the godfather of Lean Startup, Steve Blanks.

It is important to interview your customer segments, ask them questions and take those learnings.