Firstly, I want to personally thank you for checking out my newsletter! 🙌
Each month, I’ll do my best to shine a spotlight on the best product discovery practices with the aim of helping you build the right thing.
I started this newsletter because I think we’re at a tipping point. This is a once in a generation transition towards a golden era of software development. We’re moving from the speculative financial capital era (think deep tech VC-backed startups) to the sustainable production era (think profitable niche no-code enabled businesses). And this foundational change is going to rip up the old playbook when it comes to product development.
Instead of asking — can we build this product? The question is going to become what product should we build? At the rate that no-code/low-code apps are developing, the number of "builders" online is only going to grow exponentially. That means more direct and indirect competition, more SaaS tools, more ecommerce stores and more info products. The critical blocker is no longer about feasibility but desirability.
Does the market want what you’ve built?
If this thesis proves correct, then the most important asset for any product founder or team will be their ability to choose the most optimal product to build.
And product sense doesn’t come from self-referential design. It comes from a place of empathy. The founders and product teams who know their market and users best are going to win. I strongly believe it’s going to be that simple.
But when I look around the current state of product development. So many of the conversations are about the same old topics. Kanban vs Scrum, Lean vs Waterfall, Jira vs Linear - these debates were important when the limiting factor was the development process itself. They helped answer HOW products should get built. But I’d argue that these topics don’t matter as much today. Instead the focus should be on WHAT product to build next.
So my ultimate goal with this newsletter is to shift the narrative. I want to help steer the conversation towards the white space around the object. If product development is the object, the white space represents the market that the product is going to enter. I’m championing more R and less D in R&D.
The way I hope to deliver on this is to go in-depth and share the latest product discovery techniques and insights. Some of the topics I’m going to explore include:
Market sizing — is this market worth going after?
Competitive landscaping — who are you competing with?
Trends and growth analysis — is this space growing or shrinking?
Customer definition — who exactly are you targeting with your product?
User research — what qual and quant behaviours need solving?
Distribution — what kinds of channels will your product use to grow?
Product validation — how can you test if there’s enough demand for this solution?
User-centric design — is this really the optimal way to solve this problem for your customers?
Previously I’ve built and sold two internet businesses - one to Spotify, another privately. Soundwave was venture backed. It was a hell of a four year ride (mostly hell) until Spotify acquired us in 2016. Retropatents was bootstrapped and acquired in 2018 on the Shopify marketplace. My last role was as a Product Lead with Spotify where I helped ship projects like Duo and Kids.
So I’ve spent the best part of the last decade working on the white space — trying (and failing sometimes) to find product market fit. I love the art of going from 0 to 1. Trying to find a latent need for something that doesn’t yet exist and then giving that to the world.
I’m now the founder and lead coach at Product Buffs which was created to stop other teams from building the wrong thing. We do this by providing training and coaching to product leaders who want to make better product decisions.
Subscribe now if this tickles your fancy. This newsletter will always be 100% free.
In the meantime, tell your friends!