Product Discovery Basics: Everything You Need to Know - Product Talk - Deepstash

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Product Discovery

Product Discovery

We typically define product discovery in contrast with product delivery. Product discovery is used to describe the work done to make decisions about what to build, while product delivery is the work done to build, ship, and maintain a production quality product.

Good product discovery includes the customer throughout the decision-making process. through: customer interviews, usability tests, A/B tests, demand tests, customer journey mapping, experience mapping, story mapping, OKRs, opportunity solution trees, ethnographic studies, customer visits, and so on.

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The Product Mindset

The best teams are recognizing that digital products are never done. They can always iterate and improve. 

Good product teams know they can always create more value for customers and in turn create more value for their business. This shift in mindset often gets referred to as “product thinking” or as a “product mindset.”

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The Curse of Knowledge in Product Development

As product teams build digital products, they build expertise in their products. They know what the product is capable of. The challenge is that the customers don’t share this expertise.

Product people suffer from a bias called the “curse of knowledge": they develop expert knowledge about their product, they forget what it was like before they had that knowledge. And they can't imagine what it’s like for customers to not have this knowledge.

This becomes a significant problem when they make daily product discovery decisions without input from customers.

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The Underlying Structure of Product Discovery

The Underlying Structure of Product Discovery

Good product discovery has a simple underlying structure: Start with an outcome, discover opportunities, discover solutions.

  1. Good product discovery starts with a clear outcome. A business outcome measures the health of the business and is usually a financial metric or measures progress against a strategic initiative.
  2. Once a product outcome is selected, the product team needs to discover the opportunity space. The team’s goal is to discover opportunities that have the potential to drive their product outcome.
  3. Teams need to discover solutions that will address those opportunities.

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