When entrepreneurs set out to build their company, they have grand visions and aspirations. The product needs to do this, and that, and the other thing. The list goes on and on. Only, product-market fit starts small. Really small.
Here are some thoughts on initial product-market fit:
- 10 friendly customers like the product and give friendly-focused feedback, helping move a bit closer to product-market fit
- 10 paying unaffiliated (non-friendly) customers sorta-like the product and give tons of feedback, significantly moving towards product-market fit
- 10 more paying unaffiliated (non-friendly) customers really-like the product and give great feedback, inching the product closer to product-market fit
- Finally, 10 more paying unaffiliated (non-friendly) customers rave about the product and have improvement ideas, but ones that are approaching the nice-to-have category, helping assert the arrival of initial product-market fit
Product-market fit is a continuum, and doesn’t happen quickly, but when it does happen, the types of customer responses change, and enthusiasm grows. Look for happy customers, with minimal issues, and less-critical improvement suggestions, and there’s a good chance product-market fit has arrived.
What else? What are some more thoughts on initial product-market fit?