Focus on User Problems to Develop Product Strategy - Product Science Journal #36
A good product strategy connects a real customer problem in a big enough market to a customer outcome in a way that drives growth for the business.
Dear product leaders,
I've been spending a lot of time lately thinking about problem discovery and how it relates to strategy. A good product strategy connects a real customer problem in a big enough market to a customer outcome in a way that drives growth for the business.
The real customer problem and desired customer outcome are central to that strategy. I see too many company leaders come at the strategy from the business perspective first. But if your strategy isn't anchored with real customer insights gathered directly from the market, then it is likely just a pipe dream. So go out and find your customer's problems!
In this month's newsletter, I share a podcast interview on Product Voices, an article about prioritizing problems when doing product design, and a piece from Intercom on customer problem statements.
I also want to share that I've moved the date of the next public workshop from November to January so that we'll all have a bit more time to plan for it. Hope to see you there!
It was a pleasure to join JJ Rorie on her Product Voices podcast to talk about the Product Science Principles and how I figure out where to start when I first begin working with a new product team. We talked about building an evidence-based product strategy, how to develop continuous discovery and delivery, and creating a culture of empowered teams.
In this article, Julia Barrett and David Lick, UX researchers at Google, dive into why you need to prioritize customer problems for UX research instead of just doing research on solutions. "If you start by researching solutions, you run the risk of designing features that don’t truly solve a user need," they explain. They go on to describe how to prioritize problems over solutions and how to do research around problem importance.
I've always loved Intercom's perspective on product management. I've been a follower of theirs since my Shutterstock days when we used Intercom to help us get feedback and insight while we launched Shutterstock Editor. In this article, Robbie Allan ties together the customer problem and the customer outcome through a 3-part Problem Statement.
Podcast Season 5 is coming soon!
I've got some great guests lined up for Season 5, including Emily Patterson, Susan Stavitski, and JJ Rorie. Look for the season to launch in the next few weeks!
Join us for Data-Driven Product Decisions: A Hands On Workshop for Product Leaders
I've decided to move the workshop to early next year to give some time to plan ahead. On January 12-13, I'll be running a workshop in New York City and I'd love to have you there! I'll share how to build products that drive growth and outcomes for users and your company. Participants will learn the Product Science Method, a step-by-step process for evaluating product opportunities and laying the foundations for high-growth product development. Learn more here.
Brought to you by H2R Product Science
Our team at H2R Product Science partners with startup founders and product leaders to share The Product Science Principles and the accompanying framework, the Product Science Method, which I've developed over my time in tech startups. Through our coaching and consulting work, we help our clients figure out which product growth opportunities they should pursue and build the product management skill to deliver on their goals. Reach out if you'd like to explore working together, whether as a client or a team member!
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