From Idea to Market in 7 Steps
How to bring ideas to life
Ideas are nothing without outstanding execution.
Everyone can come up with hundreds, if not thousands, of ideas. Yet transforming them into products people care about is an entirely different beast.
I’d love to tell you I have a perfect guide to transforming any idea into a successful product. The truth is that I don’t have anything close to it. But, I have acquired relevant experience in what increases your chances of creating something worthwhile.
Before I share the seven steps from idea to market, you must understand that most of your ideas will suck. Sorry for being so direct, but I cannot illude you.
Statistically speaking, 9 out of 10 ideas fail. You better drop the bad ones as fast as possible.
Let me guide you through the seven steps I use to transform ideas into products. I hope that creates applicable insights for you.
The 7 steps you need to move from idea to market, in a nutshell, are:
Find a problem worth solving → Not all problems deserve your attention. Focus on the ones that can drive business outcomes.
Understand the market → Which kind of competition are you facing, and which are the available alternatives?
Be laser-focused on the problem → Pick a problem as specific as possible. Don’t try to solve everything at once.
Aim for a niche → When you have an idea; you may imagine transforming the whole world. That’s the vision, but to be actionable, pick the smallest audience you can imagine.
Give a reason for people to use it → Nobody will use your fancy new product unless you give them a meaningful reason for it.
Most lovable product → Knowing when to scale is fundamental. A great approach is getting a small group of people who love your product before bringing it to market fit.
First market fit, then scalability → As you have a small audience that loves your product, you can adventure on the market to search for fit.
Now, let’s go in-depth for each item
#1 — Find a problem worth solving
Not all problems deserve your attention. You need to invest time in identifying the ones that will help you create value for customers and businesses. Yet, finding them is anything but trivial.
Problems are all over the place. You just need to observe what happens around you. For example, Reed Hastings, Co-founder of Netflix, paid a late movie rent fee, realized that experience sucked, and decided to improve it.
I’d say that you should initially search for three aspects:
Desirability: Do customers care about it?
Feasibility: Can you solve this problem?
Viability: Is it viable from a business perspective?
Once you identify a problem that customers care about, you can solve it and create business value. It sounds like an idea worth pursuing, but don’t get too excited about it. Before going full in, you must learn other aspects of this problem space.
#2 — Understand the market
It’s easy to get super excited about your idea and jump into a Minimum Viable Product definition. Not that fast, my friend.
First, you must understand how people solve that problem and if they really care about it. I call this step market understanding.
Here’s what you should do: