Customer Development in Japan: a History Lesson

Steve Blank

I asked Tsutsumi-san to write a guest post for my blog to describe his experience with Customer Development in Japan. But customers didn’t agree. I discovered my product was a “nice to have,” not a “must have,” and we shut the company down a year a later.

Customer Development Manifesto: The Path of Warriors and Winners.

Steve Blank

This post describes a solution – the Customer Development Model. In future posts I’ll describe how Eric Ries and the Lean Startup concept provide the equivalent model for product development activities inside the building and neatly integrates customer and agile development.

Create Your Business Case Using Customer Development

Street Smart Product Manager

A few weeks ago, I spoke at the Modev MVP Conference and the Lean+Agile DC Conference about using a bootstrapped Customer Development approach to pursuing a new product idea in an existing company.

How Customer Development Failed Us

Steve Blank

Here’s his story of when Customer Development failed. We were lucky to learn about Customer Development early on in the life of our startup. More importantly, we’d witnessed Customer Development’s massive success at another local startup. We bought Steve’s book , started product development and began reaching out to customers ins search of our first earlyvangelists. So how did Customer Development fail us?

Create Your Business Case Using Customer Development

Street Smart Product Manager

A few weeks ago, I spoke at the Modev MVP Conference and the Lean+Agile DC Conference about using a bootstrapped Customer Development approach to pursuing a new product idea in an existing company.

Raising Money Using Customer Development

Steve Blank

Chasing funding versus chasing customers and a repeatable and scalable business model, is one reason startups fail. Are there customers for what you are building? No amount of learning how to get a VC meeting or improving your VC demo skills will fix the lack of concrete customer data.

Being Responsive is Critical for Successful Customer Development

Instigator Blog

Most customers tolerate bugs. Most customers tolerate products with missing features that they need (or think they need!) Most customers tolerate the quirks and hiccups that come with new technology and software. Customers can be quite forgiving. Even the feeling or inkling of being ignored can set customers into a rage; and worse, have them looking for alternative solutions to yours. And use those customer interactions to learn from them.

The Customer Development Manifesto: The Startup Death Spiral (part.

Steve Blank

This post describes how following the traditional product development can lead to a “startup death spiral.&# In the next posts that follow, I’ll describe how this model’s failures led to the Customer Development Model – offering a new way to approach startup sales and marketing activities. Three to six months after first customer ship, if Sales starts missing its numbers, the board gets concerned. Part 4 of the Customer Development Manifesto to follow.

The Customer Development Manifesto: Reasons for the Revolution.

Steve Blank

This post describes how the traditional product development model distorts startup sales, marketing and business development. In the next few posts that follow, I’ll describe how thinking of a solution to this model’s failures led to the Customer Development Model – that offers a new way to approach startup sales and marketing activities. The meaning of alpha test , beta test, and first customer ship are pretty obvious to most engineers.

The Customer Development Manifesto: Reasons for the Revolution.

Steve Blank

After 20 years of working in startups, I decided to take a step back and look at the product development model I had been following and see why it usually failed to provide useful guidance in activities outside the building – sales, marketing and business development. Every startup has some methodology for product development, launch and life-cycle management. Yet at the end of the day even with all these processes 9 out of 10 of new products are failures.

Using Customer Development To Create The Business Case For Your New Product

Street Smart Product Manager

Many of my product help calls are from folks frustrated with being able to pursue a new product in an existing company. As painful and frustrating as it is, many successful product people I’ve … Continue reading Using Customer Development To Create The Business Case For Your New Product. The post Using Customer Development To Create The Business Case For Your New Product appeared first on Street Smart Product Manager.

Complementary Iteration Loops: Product and Customer Development

Market by Numbers

Market By Numbers on Twitter | Entries RSS | Comments RSS Market By Numbers High-Tech Marketing and Customer Development Home What is Customer Development? Reply Leave a Reply Cancel Reply ← My VentureBeat Marketing and Customer Development Articles Is My Poem Lean?

The Product Development Model « Steve Blank

Steve Blank

This product development diagram had become part of the DNA of Silicon Valley. Were startups failing because of product failures or was there some other failure mode? a customer before you try and build a business. That’s in stark contrast to the traditional Product Development Model where it’s expected a customer is already there and waiting and it’s simply a matter of [.] familiar with Customer Development you should be.

The Principles of Product Development Flow

Startup Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned by Eric Ries Monday, July 13, 2009 The Principles of Product Development Flow If youve ever wondered why agile or lean development techniques work, The Principles of Product Development Flow: Second Generation Lean Product Development by Donald G.

The Entrepreneur's Guide to Customer Development

Startup Lessons Learned

I believe it is the best introduction to Customer Development you can buy. As all of you know, Steve Blank is the progenitor of Customer Development and author of The Four Steps to the Epiphany. Here’s hoping they soon tackle Customer Validation.

Is the Lean Startup Dead?

Steve Blank

Reading the NY Times article “ Jeffrey Katzenberg Raises $1 Billion for Short-Form Video Venture, ” I realized it was time for a new startup heuristic: the amount of customer discovery and product-market fit you need to find is inversely proportional to the amount and availability of risk capital. First Movers” didn’t understand customer problems or the product features that solved those problems (what we now call product-market fit).

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MVP Is Not The Smallest Collection Of Features You Can Deliver

Street Smart Product Manager

As product people in the non-startup world familiarize themselves with Lean Startup concepts, there’s a lot of discussion and confusion about what is and isn’t an MVP. The post MVP Is Not The Smallest Collection Of Features You Can Deliver appeared first on Street Smart Product Manager. Worse, many execs and CEOs have latched on to the term without really understanding what truly constitutes an MVP — in effect, they use it as a buzzword, and as […].

RIP PRDs. Long Live “Agile Conversations”

Street Smart Product Manager

Many of my free product help calls are about ways to pursue customer development and gather VOC, bootstrap new product efforts, and apply lean principles to product management activities. Long Live “Agile Conversations” appeared first on Street Smart Product Manager.

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Lessons Learned: What is customer development?

Startup Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned by Eric Ries Saturday, November 8, 2008 What is customer development? When we build products, we use a methodology. But too often when its time to think about customers, marketing, positioning, or PR, we delegate it to "marketroids" or "suits."

MVP Is Not The Smallest Collection Of Features You Can Deliver

Street Smart Product Manager

As product people in the non-startup world familiarize themselves with Lean Startup concepts, there’s a lot of discussion and confusion about what is and isn’t an MVP. The post MVP Is Not The Smallest Collection Of Features You Can Deliver appeared first on Street Smart Product Manager. Worse, many execs and CEOs have latched on to the term without really understanding what truly constitutes an MVP — in effect, they use it as a buzzword, and as […].

It’s Not a Conversion Problem, It’s a Customer Development Problem

ConversionXL

Not because they have a conversion problem but because they never really nail the product or how to market it. The most common mistake startups make is assuming they can operate the same way big companies do, and expect success with little to no feedback from potential customers.

The Top Strategies For Doing Customer Interviews That Get You Real Insights

Street Smart Product Manager

We all know a core responsibility of a product manager is to constantly and consistently bring in the customer perspective into the business. That means the ability to effectively interview customers is a critical skill for every product manager.

Book Short: Deep Dive on Customer Development

OnlyOnce

Book Short: Deep Dive on Customer Development. The Startup Owners Manual is 600 pages of really detailed how-to around the first two steps of Blank’s four steps, Customer Discovery and Customer Validation. It doesn’t get into the last two steps at all, Customer Creation and Company Building.

Lessons Learned: Product development leverage

Startup Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned by Eric Ries Sunday, April 26, 2009 Product development leverage Leverage has once again become a dirty word in the world of finance, and rightly so. But I want to talk about a different kind of leverage, the kind that you can get in product development. Its a force that allows startups to build products at parity with much larger companies - cheaper and much faster. In the end, I believe they co-created our product with us.

Thoughts on scientific product development

Startup Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned by Eric Ries Monday, September 22, 2008 Thoughts on scientific product development I enjoyed reading a post today from Laserlike (Mike Speiser), on Scientific product development. By embracing a scientific approach to product development, not only will your business have a much higher probability of success, but it will also be a more fun and creative place to work. By starting a new product off with as few features as possible (1?),

Lessons Learned: Customer Development Engineering

Startup Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned by Eric Ries Sunday, September 7, 2008 Customer Development Engineering Yesterday, I had the opportunity to guest lecture again in Steve Blank s entrepreneurship class at the Berkeley-Columbia executive MBA program. In addition to presenting the IMVU case, we tried for the first time to do an overview of a software engineering methodology that integrates practices from agile software development with Steves method of Customer Development.

Fear and Loathing in Customer Development by @profitably

Mark Birch

profitably : …I felt a visceral twist in my stomach this morning when I met with a customer, and he told me that he didn’t care about a particular feature that I thought for sure he would love…But is it possible that when it all comes down to it, we’re actually under too much time pressure (and are too fearful) to make sure—to really make sure—the 7 numbers add up and that our customers really care about what we’re working on? I do believe there is a limit to customer development.

Bootstrapping A Startup Product In Your Company

Street Smart Product Manager

Many of my product help calls are from folks frustrated with being able to pursue a new product in an existing company. As painful and frustrating as it is, many successful product people I’ve met have […].

Why Build, Measure, Learn – isn’t just throwing things against the wall to see if they work

Steve Blank

I am always surprised when critics complain that the Lean Startup’s Build, Measure, Learn approach is nothing more than “throwing incomplete products out of the building to see if they work.”. Repeat, learning whether to iterate, pivot or restart until you have something that customers love.

RIP PRDs. Long Live “Agile Conversations”

Street Smart Product Manager

Many of my free product help calls are about ways to pursue customer development and gather VOC, bootstrap new product efforts, and apply lean principles to product management activities. Long Live “Agile Conversations” appeared first on Street Smart Product Manager.

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It’s Not a Conversion Problem, It’s a Customer Development Problem

conversionxl.com

It’s Not a Conversion Problem, It’s a Customer Development Problem. Not because they have a conversion problem but because they never really nail the product or how to market it. This is a customer development problem. So What is Customer Development?

A Case Study In Defining An MVP

Street Smart Product Manager

In my last post, I talked about how an MVP is not the smallest collection of features to be delivered in the first version of your product. An MVP is about delivering real value to customers for the purposes of maximizing validated learning. The post A Case Study In Defining An MVP appeared first on Street Smart Product Manager. So how to go about defining an MVP? It all depends on […].

Crisis Management by Firing Executives – There’s A Better Way

Steve Blank

In an existing company with existing customers you 1) understand the customers problem and 2) since you do, you can specify the entire feature set on day one. Notice that the traditional product introduction model leads to a product launch and the execution of a revenue plan.

Why Products Fail [PODCAST]

Street Smart Product Manager

Why do products fail? What are the three important milestones for a new product? How do you manage stakeholders when building a new product? What are the key skills of a good product manager? … Continue reading Why Products Fail [PODCAST]. The post Why Products Fail [PODCAST] appeared first on Street Smart Product Manager. Why is it so important to get to market fast? What is an MVP? How do you stay in touch with current trends?

Five Rules for Making Products That Sell Themselves

YoungUpstarts

by Dan Adams , president of Advanced Industrial Marketing and author of “ New Product Blueprinting: The Handbook for B2B Organic Growth “ Right now our economy and our nation feel anything but business-friendly. All suppliers say they want to deliver value to their customers.

Tesla and Adobe: Why Continuous Deployment May Mean Continuous Customer Disappointment

Steve Blank

For the last 75 years products (both durable goods and software) were built via Waterfall development. This process forced companies to release and launch products by model years, and market new and “improved” versions. The Old Days – Waterfall Product Development.

Why Corporate Skunk Works Need to Die

Steve Blank

In the 20 th century corporate skunk works were used to develop disruptive innovation separate from the rest of the company. ——– In the 20 th century companies could be leaders in a market for decades by just focusing on their core product(s).

Building Great Founding Teams

Steve Blank

Its goal is to take the original idea and search for a repeatable and scalable business model - first by finding product/market fit, then by testing all the parts of the business model (pricing, channel, acquisition/activation, partners, costs, etc.).

The National Geospatial Intelligence Agency Goes Lean

Steve Blank

To promote innovation inside the NGA, they’ve staffed an Enterprise Innovation Office (EIO) to coach, educate and advise the entire agency, from core leadership to the operational edges, with methods and concepts of validated learning through rapid experimentation and customer development.

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The National Geospatial Intelligence Agency Goes Lean

Steve Blank

To promote innovation inside the NGA, they’ve staffed an Enterprise Innovation Office (EIO) to coach, educate and advise the entire agency, from core leadership to the operational edges, with methods and concepts of validated learning through rapid experimentation and customer development.

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Fear of Failure and Lack of Speed In a Large Corporation

Steve Blank

And when we do make bets, they’re small bets on incremental products or acquisitions that simply add to the bottom line.”. Startups have finite time and resources to find product/market fit before they run out of money. They’ve found product/market fit (what products customers want to buy). They’ve learned the best distribution channel to get the product from their company to the customer. and how to price the product.

9 Deadliest Start-up Sins

Steve Blank

The excerpts, which appeared first at Inc.com , highlight the Customer Development process, best practices, tips and instructions contained in our book. Assuming you know what the customer wants. where they can “launch” the product. Filed under: Customer Development.

Blowing up the Business Plan at U.C. Berkeley Haas Business School

Steve Blank

Berkeley were heavily funded to develop Cold War weapon systems. Starting in the 1950’s, Stanford’s engineering department became “outward facing” and developed a culture of spinouts and active faculty support and participation in the first wave of Silicon Valley startups. At the same time Berkeley was also developing Cold War weapons systems. Traction and evidence from customers were what investors were looking for – even in “slow” sectors like healthcare and energy.