The product vision defines where the product should be 3-5 years from now. It's the north star for the product team.
- Define the product vision in terms of the customer problem — before and after.
- Avoid abstract, technology-driven product visions that ignore the customer problem (for example "We want to apply smart contracts on the ETH blockchain to the pet food industry")
- The product vision should be understandable for everybody in the organization, as well as customers.
- Ignore the competitive situation in the product vision. This is all about customer value that the product will create.
Example of a before-and-after product vision visualization:
Making it tangible
According to Donohue and Newell, the following steps can get you quickly to a focused product vision:
- What problem are you solving? That's of course one of the most important slides in any pitch deck, but you constantly have to work on your startup's deep understanding of the customer problem.
- What's the use case for your product? This should answer how specifically your product is solving the customer problem.
- Why is your use case important? This step is often overlooked: If your solution is just a nice-to-have element, customers will not be willing to pay and go through the hassle of adopting your product.
- Describe an ideal future state with a fictitious future press release and product FAQ This exercise makes your product value proposition tangible and will show holes in your thinking quickly.
- Define the business and UX metrics for your product How will you measure the success of your product? Which few KPIs will decide if this is going to be a successful product?