This initial phase lays the foundation for Product Discovery. It’s essential that we stay open-minded because ideas can come from everywhere.
Collect ideas and insights potentially worth exploring, wherever they might come from.
To be a bit more specific, it often helps to listen to different audiences:
What do users complain about? Where does a business process break? Which jobs do they give up completing? Where do we see a lot of support tickets or hiccups in usage data?
What do Consultants complain about? Where could implementation for customers be simpler, easier, or faster? How could we ensure quicker time to value?
What do Salespeople complain about? What are typical road blockers in the B2B sales process? Which checklist requirements do we miss? When do we lose against the competition? How can we prove our value proposition in a better way?
Where do we have tech debt? Where do we see a lot of bug reports? Where do we have outdated technology, maintenance, or performance issues?
Thus, a series of customer interviews were carried out, where two factual quick fixes were actually identified right on the spot, and several long-term discovery opportunities were noted down. It was not only a satisfying exchange for the customer but also good learning for the Product Manager – after all, the customer was extremely eager to explain their problems to a great extent.
Now, the Product Manager is able to spontaneously email the customers for feedback on any part of the product and expect a thorough answer. Moreover, when hearing about the development of a new feature, the customer proposed to volunteer to be the Beta testing partner and offer any kind of real-life information that may help the product team develop.
It’s an excellent situation to be in when the Product Manager has a trusting connection with a customer who uses the product extensively. Even better, the customer turned from complaining to helping the Product Manager understand issues.