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Playbook for Achieving Product Market Fit



Product Market Fit Pyramid


  • Starts with the target customer (whose life are we trying to make better)
  • What are the customers underserved needs


  • Value proposition (how do we plan to be different and the best in the market)
  • What's the functionality we need to build into the product
  • User Experience Design (bring the functionality to life)
Starts with the target customer (whose life are we trying to make better)
  • Initially, you might not have a clear definition of who the customer is that you are targeting.
What are the customers underserved needs
  • Problem space vs Solution Space
  • Problem Space - Is a customenr need that you want your product to address to solve for the user i.e. I want to create a way for people to easily share photos with friends.
  • Solution Space - A specific implementation (product /design) that would be used to deliver the solution i.e. mobile app etc.
  • Avoid poluting your problem space with the solution space
  • 5 Whys Technique (why is it valuable if you ......)
  • Spend some time in the problem space before the solution space
  • Have a clear mapping between the problem and a feature that will provide value to the customer
Priotizing User Needs
  • Plot an importance of user need vs satisfaction of user needs being met matrix (low , medium, high). Plot the features.
Define the Value proposition
  • How fully does the product met the need vs satisfaction/disatisfaction (Kano Model)
  • Must haves i.e. seatbelts in cars
  • Delighters (wow feature) i.e. GPS in cars
Minimum Viable Product Feature Set
  • The MVP needs to be useable and satisfy a customers user needs.
  • Test using clickable prototypes
Test with Customers


  • Build a frame around learning, not pitching
  • Cast a wide net initially
  • Prefer face-to-face interviews
  • Start with people you know
  • Take someone along with you (take notes)
  • Pick a neutral location (or where the prospect prefers)
  • Ask for sufficient time (20 to 30 minutes)
  • Avoid recording interviews
  • Document results immediately ater the interview
  • Prepare yourself to intverview 30 to 60 people over 4-6 weeks period


  • Start with your first degree contacts
  • Ask for introductions
  • Use techniques such as cold calling


  • Welcome (Set The Stage) i.e. “The interview will work like this. I’ll start by describing the main problems we are tackling, and then I’ll ask if any of those resonate with you.I’d like to stress that we don’t have a finished product yet, and our objective is to learn from you, not to sell or pitch anything to you.Does that sound good?”

  • Collect Demographics i.e. “How old are they they? How many kids do they have? Do they track their expenses?“

  • Tell A Story i.e. “How we faced a problem with expense tracking as a startup business. Does any of that resonate with you?“

  • State the top one to three problems and ask your prospects to rank (create a problem list - falsifiable hyphthoses)

  • Explore customer's worldview i.e. Go through each problem and ask the interviewees how they address the problem today.

  • Wrapping Up i.e. “As I mentioned at the start, this isn’t a finished product, but we are building a product that will simplify how parents share their photos and videos online. The best way to describe the concept might be “SmugMug without any uploading” (replace “SmugMug” with the name of the interviewee’s existing service).Based on what we talked about today, would you be willing to see the product when we have something ready?”

  • Document Results

  • Prepare, Document and update your lean model canvas

What are the problem interview exit criteria

You done when you have interviewed at least 10 people and you:

  • Can identify the demographics of an early adopter
  • Have a must-have problem
  • Can describe how customers solve this problem today”
  • Sample Problem Interview Sheet (attach screenshot from phone)