Derrick Reimer – Transforming Customer Input into Killer Features – MicroConf 2017 Attendee Talk

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  • We can’t build everything customers ask for!
  • 1) Parse
    • Customers love to make their feature requests in the form of the solution, not eh problem
    • “What are you actually trying to accomplish with this?”
    • Example: feature to send an arbitrary HTTP post to a certain endpoint
      • What do you really want?
      • Oh, an integration with XYZ
      • So what we should really build is that integration
    • Looking for consensus. Patterns. Lots of people with the same pain point
  • 2) Synthesize
    • Distill the problem down into what the best SOLUTION is
    • Whiteboard
    • Crazy ideas
      • The best ideas start with “this is gonna sound stupid, but…”
  • 3) Prioritize
    • 2 essential questions
      • Is this going to help us gain new customers?
      • Is this going to help us retain existing customers?
    • If yes to both, probably good to build in the near term
    • If it’s no, it may not be worth building in the near term
    • We don’t plan too long term. We try to plan out 60-90 days into the future
    • Do we have the resources on board right now to actually build this right now?
  • 4) Build
    • Hammer down the scope as small as possible
    • Get it to customers as early as you can
    • Recent example: customers wanted ability to merge two subscribers in Drip
      • Put it off for a long time
      • Lot of work
      • Hammered it down to only merging tags and custom fields
      • Could knock it out in about 6 weeks
      • Get it out early, get feedback
      • If it solved 80% of the problems, can probably stop there.
      • If they need more functionality, we can circle back
  • Derrick Reimer
    www.scalingsaas.com
    @derrickreimer

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