On this blog, I write a lot about making data-driven decisions. But what if you just starting to think about your product? You have a vague idea and nothing more. No point to go for prototyping or even talking to customers as you don't know yet who to talk to and what to talk about. In such situation - start from creating a product vision.
Every product deserves a visionProduct vision, unlike company vision statement, is not about wishful thinking: "We want to be number one in all markets we operate in". Product vision is a clearly defined set of statements that describes a product, it's market and it's USPs.
Product Vision consists of the following information:
- Whose problems are we trying to solve ? (customer, user personas)
- What top problem(s) we gonna solve? (customer, user needs)
- What critical elements of our solution? (top marketable features)
- What differentiates us from existing solutions? (USPs)
Internal ones (communicated mainly internally)
- How are we gonna make money from it? (business model)
- Can we do it? (feasibility)
Roman Pichler has described Product Vision in his book "Agile Product Management with Scrum" and in the following blog post: Envisioning your Product.
Joel Spolsky has offered a simple template to capture a Product Vision:
- For (target customer)
- Who (statement of a need or an opportunity)
- The (product name) is a (product category)
- That (key benefit, compelling reason to buy)
- Unlike (primary competitive alternative)
- Our product (statement of primary differentiation)
Here is a Product Vision example created using this template:
"For a mid-sized company's marketing and sales departments who need basic CRM functionality, the CRM-Innovator is a Web-based service that provides sales tracking, lead generation, and sales representative support features that improve customer relationships at critical touch points. Unlike other services or package software products, our product provides very capable services at a moderate cost."
You can also use Roman's template, the Vision Board (my favorite):