Best Practices to Building and Launching your MVP
When building a company or new product you should always start with a simple premise:
“What is the least amount of work I can do to deliver value?”
This means you are not going to do things like:
- Incorporating your business until you know it’s viable.
- Spending thousands of dollars developing an app.
- Hiring a team without knowing if people even want the product.
- Spend insane amounts of time making a logo or coming up with the right name.
This is called an MVP (minimum viable product). It has just enough features to satisfy early adopters and provide you with enough feedback for future development.
My startup Cicero.ly launched as a newsletter before it became a web app. It was a standardized app before it became personalized. And it was a web app before it became a phone app.
Why? Because making a phone app is extremely expensive and time-consuming and we wanted to get it right.
You might be thinking, “This sounds like too much work”
You need to always start with an MVP unless you want to waste time and money.
- You can test your product quickly before investing too much time and money in a pipe dream.
- Gather valuable customer feedback to inform future development decisions and not make useless features.
- Build a scalable product that can be easily improved over time based on customer feedback.
But how do you actually develop your Minimum Viable Product?
This assumes you’ve already validated your problem and solution. That means you’ve:
- Talked to users.
- Identified how important this problem is to them, how it impacts them, what solutions they’ve tried, why they didn’t work, and what solution they wish they had.
- Created some personas
- Built a landing page and got multiple signups before building a product.
- Have a waitlist or users ready to try your MVP.
- Ideally, tested mockups or simple diagrams with users before ever building an MVP.
If you don’t have any of the above, then you should not be building an MVP yet. It’s that simple.
There are 5 ways of building your product:
1. Doing it yourself with co-founders (Recommended):
Nothing beats doing it yourself.
“But I don’t know how to code or make an app!”
You don’t need to! Join some No Code Communities, and get started ASAP. Here are some that might help:
100 Days of No-Code | No Code Founders | On Deck No-Code
2. Hire an Agency:
This is expensive, really really expensive, but is surely a way out.
You can find such agencies using Clutch, Upcity, and Breefwork
3. Hire Your Own Developers and Design people:
If you have what it takes to manage your own development team, then do it!
Hire pre-vetted developers using freelance platforms like Upwork | TopTal | Remote Base | Howdy
4. Apply to Venture Studios:
These places can help you create your startup for free, in exchange for a lot of equity. Here are the top ones to apply for.
Colab | Betaworks | Atomic | Next Big Thing | High Alpha
5. Use “Cofounder agencies”:
I don’t know what else to call these things, but basically, they are like agencies but focus on startups. Here are some:
Tool of the DAY:
Bubble: “Building tech is slow and expensive. Bubble is the most powerful no-code platform for creating digital products. Build better and faster.”
You need little to no experience to start learning and using this app builder.
Remember, follow the basic tenets of The Mom Test at every part of your product-building journey.
If you need help with creating or validating your MVP, just give me a quick reply and I’ll try my best to reach out.
Missed Something? Share it in the comment below
That’s it for today.
See you next week.
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