One of the most widely-used sayings in the technology world involves not “reinventing the wheel.” While some companies thrive on the leading edge, others benefit from taking a more deliberate approach. This tactic allows them to leverage innovative designs and concepts while avoiding the same mistakes as “early adopters.” This approach typically leads to a more effective digital venture as a result.
Using Eric Ries’ Lean Startup methodology, companies can create a process for validated learning to test and measure the success of potential digital ventures. Lean Startup uses a feedback loop focusing on quickly prototyping an idea to test its viability in the market. Ultimately, it provides a more cost-effective way to craft a digital venture.
While each venture will require its own application of the Build-Measure-Learn feedback loop, organizations can and should use knowledge from past ventures - both their own and others.
The best way to leverage the feedback loop of other organizations is to partner with a company known for crafting digital ventures using the Lean Startup approach. Working with a digital ventures firm allows you to leverage experience and insights gained from other company’s digital ventures to improve and speed up your own Lean Startup approach. Let’s take a closer look to see if this approach makes sense for your organization’s next conceptual innovation.
An Overview of Lean Startup
Developed by entrepreneur Eric Ries, Lean Startup focuses on a customer-centric design approach. The project team ultimately crafts a more viable digital venture as a result of customer feedback provided throughout the effort.
A critical end goal with Lean Startup involves determining whether a digital venture solves a customer need as early in the project lifecycle as possible. With this target in mind, the team builds a minimum viable product to test the product concept while learning more about the potential customers. Getting these answers at the beginning of a project costs significantly less compared to after a product hits the marketplace.
The Build-Measure-Learn loop lies at the heart of Lean Startup. As noted earlier, the project team builds the minimum viable product from a concept. It then measures customer interactions and reactions using detailed metrics. Finally, the team uses any lessons learned to design potential enhancements to the digital venture. This loop repeats itself as many times as necessary.
As I mentioned in a past blog, the goal of the MVP isn’t necessarily to build a prototype of your final product. The goal is to learn as much as possible about the customer, market, and business opportunities.
Wisdom Gleaned From Earlier Projects Informs the Lean Startup Approach
Taking into account the goal of the Build-Measure-Learn framework, many of the insights gained about the customer and market can carry over into future ventures. While each new digital venture typically requires initiating a fresh loop, project teams also benefit from the wisdom gained from previous Lean Startup projects. Experience from earlier software development projects using other methodologies also adds value.
In addition to the customer insights you can carry over, experience crafting digital ventures with Lean Startup and other methodologies will make your next process run smoother. Perhaps the project team gains an improved ability to interpret customer usage metrics? Or the software engineers now write more efficient and reusable code. A similar concept also applies to other elements of a digital venture, including graphic design and UX considerations. In the end, this experience and wisdom help development teams achieve the Holy Grail of continuous improvement.
Partner With a Mature Firm Experienced in Crafting Compelling Digital Ventures
Whether your company is well versed in the Lean Startup approach or not, partnering with a firm with expertise in digital ventures can add valuable insights and efficiencies. As I mentioned, every time you run the Build-Measure-Learn loop, you benefit from insights gained from previous loops. Working with a firm that has gone through this process hundreds of times with various products and industries can present invaluable insights.
Perhaps your digital ventures firm used the Lean Startup approach to help another company test a specific feature they believe mattered to their target customer. If your customer has similarities, you can use the experience gained in this test to ensure your own MVP more efficiently tests your hypothesis.
Maybe a development shop already built a compelling mobile app with a similar feature set and customer base as your product idea? The maturity of this organization helps streamline the software development lifecycle, resulting in a better product at a lower cost.
When searching for an experienced digital ventures firm with the capability to bring your organization’s next idea to fruition, look no further than 923 Digital. As experts in Lean Startup and other modern software methodologies, expect a great product delivered in a cost effective fashion. Connect with us as soon as possible to discuss your company’s intriguing concept.