Lectera guide: How to launch your product from square one
Business learning is the key to success in any business area. Many people dream of having their own business. However, for it to work, you need a highly sought-after and successful product. It will be easier to create it if you go through special business learning. But what if you don’t have time or resources for such training? Then you can just take online courses or try to learn how to create a product yourself. The whole process consists of six steps. Here is a quick guide from the international educational platform Lectera on how to launch your product from square one and start your business learning.
Identify customer needs
Your product should address a specific problem for your target audience. If a product makes them feel better and improves their quality of life, it is a good product and people will definitely buy it. Here are a few questions you should ask yourself at the very beginning of developing your product:
- What problem can my future product solve?
- What will motivate customers to buy it?
- Why should customers choose my product over the one of competitors?
- What is the ultimate goal of my customers when using the product? What will they consider a success?
You must clearly understand what the customer means by the word “success”. For example, if you are developing accounting software, then it will be a success for the customer if this software completely takes over their accounting routine. If you are creating a brand of clothing, then the customer will consider the durability of this clothing, its quality, and matching their design preferences a success.
Of course, you cannot immediately answer all these questions and see what your customers need. You need to talk to them to get the answers you need and this is the key to business learning. You will be surprised to learn how many unspoken thoughts and wishes they have! You can learn more about your customers through interviews or online surveys. Thanks to them you can make some rather unexpected discoveries that will completely remold your idea of the perfect product.
Expand your product from basic functions to additional ones
If your product solves a specific customer problem, that’s great! But what about going beyond it and thinking outside of the box? After all, having satisfied one problem, the customer may want more. Moreover, all of these “additional features” are your competitive advantage. This is why they must be unique.
Business learning is essential if you wish to expand your business. For example, free help with device setup, quality service, regular troubleshooting, consultations, or even training. There are tons of options, but the more value you offer your customers, the more needs you will satisfy. This in turn contributes to customer engagement and your company’s reputation.
The customer’s road map will help you determine which expansions your customers would like to see, and in which direction you can move after the product launch. You will learn how to draw it up in the Lectera course “How to Create High-Income Product: Strategy and Market Studies”. This course is created specifically for entrepreneurs who want to launch a top product on the market, but do not know all the details. In 7 lessons, you will learn high sales storytelling method, the TAM, SAM and SWOT analysis methods, the Strategy Canvas model, various product management tools, and more.
A whole team of specialists is always involved in creating a product. Your job, as the leader and business owner, is to coordinate, direct, and organize everything and everyone. You cannot create a product by yourself. That is why you should not entrust yourself with all the development responsibilities.
Ideally, a dedicated team of specialists should be responsible for business learning and studying the customer’s roadmap and needs. However, as is often the case, not every company is ready to allocate the budget for this. This issue is especially relevant for small businesses and startups: here the development team does all the work from start to finish, including market and audience research. This can complicate the product development process.
What you need to do is to assign roles and distribute responsibilities. You must clearly understand who is responsible for each development aspect. Take the time to document the process and do analytics to figure out which area each specialist is most efficient in. Ensure that all employees have feedback from the target audience. With equal access to it, all of them together can learn about your business and create a truly valuable and useful product.
You have thought everything through, planned and appointed a lot. By this stage, through business learning, you should already have a clear idea of what kind of product your audience needs and what they expect after it enters the market. Now you need to systematize it! Collect all your data in one document — use charts and timelines for visual clarity. Here are the things you must include in a shared document:
- Customer’s avatar (characterization)
- Customer life cycle
- Potential opportunities to increase customer satisfaction
- Responsible employees and their tasks
- Diagrammatic action plan
- All statistics and analytics
This document ensures that each team member understands the customer’s needs, their responsibilities, the goals of the product and how it should ultimately turn out. Perhaps, organizing the data, you will find that you overlooked something or, maybe, left a gap that requires another interview with potential customers.
Create an MVP and test your product
With the amount of information you’ve gathered by undertaking business learning, you might feel like you’re fully prepared for product development and later, its release. Far from it! You can make a mistake when you least expect it. The sooner you create a product, the more likely you are to slip. That is why you need an MVP — a minimum viable product, that is, intermediate versions of a finished product that can be tested on potential customers to find out its pros and cons.
You can monitor the development process through any programme — from Google Calendar to Excel spreadsheet or any CRM system. Cloud programmes and whiteboards that all employees have access to can also come in handy when tracking their work in real time. It is better to choose software that can store all the necessary information in one place — both product data and information on the process of its creation.
Creating a product is a long and painstaking process, which can be difficult to figure out on one’s own. To make your life easier, you can take the Lectera course “Creating a Product From Scratch: Studying Consumers and Competitors.” Through business learning, it will help you master the CustDev approach from the very beginning, understand the product life cycle, learn how to conduct surveys and interviews, and collect as much useful information on the product launch as possible. Business learning with Lectera — this is just 8 lessons that take 15 minutes a day! Finish it and you will release a profitable and successful product in no time.