What’s a product strategy? How to develop one that sets you apart?

  1. Solve a large problem for a user.
  2. Be defensible to time and market conditions.
  3. Establish as a leader in the market.

You develop a good product strategy when you take your users’ needs into account.

But you’ll make a difference and move the needle when you take holistic approach.

What’s a product strategy?

  1. Vision
  2. Customer needs
  3. Customer behaviour
  4. Current market conditions

“Good product managers know the market, the product, the product line and the competition extremely well and operate from a strong basis of knowledge and confidence.”

~ Ben Horowitz, A16Z

  1. Netflix went from renting DVDs, to online streaming, to producing interactive shows.
  2. Amazon went from selling books online, to becoming an online retail store, to selling smart devices that can talk to you.

How to develop a product strategy?

1. Develop a product vision to guide your strategy

  1. It describes the motivation behind the product.
  2. Keeps the target user in mind.
  3. Looks beyond the product.
  4. Employs a shared vision.
  5. Guides key decisions.

Because it is a lot easier to give in to every request your customer throws at you when you don’t stand for something.

2. Use data to set an actionable goal for your product

And best product goals are tied to outcomes.

Not outputs.

  1. If your feature adoption and usage are as expected, you can choose to set a new goal that will take your product vision further.
  2. If the adoption and usage aren’t as expected, you’d be better off on understanding why they aren’t performing as expected and improving them.

3. Prioritize features to reflect your product goal

4. Go beyond aligning members on the product strategy

  1. On a common goal.
  2. On a goal specific to their discipline.

Further Reading

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