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How to reach Product Market Fit

According to Marc Andreessen, product-market fit means "being in a good market with a product that can satisfy that market." It means that you have identified a need in the market and built a solution that customers want to buy.

The Lean Product Process is an iterative easy-to-follow process to achieve product market fit.

  1. Determine your target customer. Conduct market research to figure out who your target customer is. Develop personas to describe who they are. You can have high-level hypotheses about who the customer is and revise and iterate.
  2. Identify the customer needs. What are your customer needs? You want to address the needs of your customers that aren't being adequately met using current solutions. What's your competitive advantage? Why is the customer unhappy?
  3. What is the value proposition? How will you outperform competitors? Will you offer a more affordable price? Better quality? Better packaging? New services?
  4. Determine the MVP feature set. You will need to test your hypothesis by implementing an MVP. It would help if you determined the features for the MVP Focus on core functionality. You need to validate your idea and that you are going in the right direction. Iterate on the MVP until people find it viable. 
  5. Create an MVP prototype. The MVP doesn't have to be fully implemented code. It can be a series of clickable screens built using Invision. It should simulate the user experience with enough fidelity and interactivity to gain valuable feedback from customers. 
  6. Test the MVP. Get feedback from customers about your MVP. Use screen questions to ensure that the people you ask for feedback are in your target market. What does the customer say when they use the prototype? What do they like or not like about the prototype? Ask clarifying questions. Don't ask leading questions. Focus on open-ended questions such as "can you please tell me what you thought about this feature"?
  7. Iterate to reach product market fit. You want to see an increase in positive feedback from customers. The goal is to validate your hypothesis and design a product with a strong product market fit. If you are unable to make progress despite several iterations, step back and revisit the hypothesis. You might need to pivot if customers are not responding well to your product. Iterate on the MVP until you get no negative feedback and have an MVP that customers consider easy to use and find valuable.

To measure product market fit, keep track of the following

  1. How quickly do customers make up their minds about a purchase?
  2. Do customers mention your product to their friends, family, and connections?
  3. What is your retention rate?
  4. Are customers interacting with your marketing efforts?
  5. How many customers stopped using the product? 

You might find a mentor useful if you need help reaching product market fit. You can book a call with a mentor on mentordial.com. Mentordial gives you access to leading product managers from reputable companies in the top 1% of their industries. They can help you understand the product market fit and how to achieve it. They can also help you evaluate your startup to help you reach product market fit. We also give you access to top entrepreneurs who have built and sold companies, including entrepreneurs who have raised millions from top VCs. Book a call today if you need help.

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