Do you have a product that meets the demands of the present market? If so, congratulations, you’ve achieved product market fit. This concept was introduced by Marc Andreesen, a startup coach and investor, who defined it as having a product that effectively caters to a specific market. Essentially, when you recognise a market need and develop a solution that customers genuinely desire, you are providing them with what they want. This is a winning solution for both you and your customers.
How Do You Know If You’re Product Market Fit?
Even if you have an amazing product, if there is no current demand for it, you won’t be able to generate sales. Regardless of how incredible your product may be, a business cannot sustain itself without customers who are willing to purchase it.
Product market fit is achieved when you possess a profound understanding of your customers and their perceptions of your brand and product. To determine if you have achieved product market fit, consider the following criteria:
- Is your product experiencing organic growth?
- Are people voluntarily spreading the word about your product?
- Do people believe it is worthwhile to spend their money on your product?
By assessing these factors, you can gauge whether your product has successfully aligned with the needs and desires of the market.
How Do You Become Product Market Fit?
Sometimes, it may be necessary to start fresh, but often it involves adjusting your existing product to align with current trends and markets. The most successful brands are those that are adaptable to their customer’s needs and continuously seek ways to improve. It’s important to remember that product market fit is not a black-and-white concept, and varies from business to business. However, there are established processes you can follow to help you achieve it:
- Determine your target customer: Identify who you believe will be interested in purchasing your offering and how it will address their needs.
- Identify the underserved needs of your target customer: Selling a product or service in a market saturated with existing solutions can be challenging. Instead, focus on identifying what aspects your target customers are unhappy with. What pain points do they have, and how can your product help them solve those issues?
- Define your value proposition: Don’t fret over the level of competition in the market. Instead, concentrate on what sets your business apart. How will your product better meet your customers’ needs compared to the alternatives available?
- Specify your minimum viable product (MVP) feature set: Determine the essential features and functionalities required for your MVP. In other words, what is the simplest version of your product that can still address the core needs of your target customers?
- Develop your MVP: Build the initial version of your product with the identified features and functionalities. You can keep this as simple as possible.
- Test your MVP with customers: Engage with your target customers and gather feedback on your MVP. Evaluate how well it meets their needs, identify areas for improvement, and then work from there.
By following these steps, you can refine your product to better align with the market and increase the likelihood of achieving a state of product market fit that is ready to be launched successfully. It’s not always easy to objectively evaluate our own products and identify the underlying issues, and it can be difficult to let go of a product that we feel attached to. However, if you are not seeing the results you want, it is time to devise a new game plan. Sometimes, even a small tweak can transform an existing product into something valuable for everyone involved.
So take a closer look at what you’re selling – is it product fit?