How To Build a Product People Really Love

Eric Wahlforss, one of the founders of SoundCloud, recently said, “To make a product people really love, find those people and iterate together with them”.

This puts the focus on customers and what they want.  It’s democratization of development.  Obviously, you can go too far in this direction and cede to every feature demand, but the point it clear: you’re building a product for your customers.  Give them what they want.

This reminds me of the “lean startup” approach of another Eric – Eric Ries. His customer development-focused approach promises to save you time, money and frustration when launching a startup. He helps you avoid building a product nobody wants.

Here’s a video of Eric at Seedcamp a couple years ago. I watch it from time to time to keep me focused on what really matters when developing a product – learning, iteration and process, not gut instincts and “feel”.


Seedcamp Week ’09. Day 2. Masterclass with Eric Ries from Seedcamp on Vimeo.

Here’s one of my favorite quotes from the video:

“If you already know for sure what customers want, Amen, brother, go make a lot of money building an amazing experience that they’re going to want. The issue is that we don’t know. The ability to sit at the whiteboard and imagine the perfect product is way overrated.”

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