Marc Andreessen defined Product-market fit as finding a good market with a product capable of satisfying that market. Marc is often credited with developing the PMF concept
In other words, it is the point at which a product satisfies a strong demand within its intended market, resulting in widespread customer adoption, engagement, and satisfaction.
Generally, PMF is characterized by many factors which could be Customer Demand, Usage and Adoption, Customer Satisfaction, Engagement and Retention, Competitive Advantage, etc.
Many startups often focus on reaching this stage before scaling their operations and investing heavily in marketing and expansion efforts.
If you remember the early days of Netflix, how they originally started as a DVD rental service but then achieved PMF when they transitioned into a streaming platform.
They identified a growing customer demand for convenient and on-demand access to a wide variety of movies and TV shows.
It’s not just Netflix as a startup that has hit PMF, other brands like Apple, Tesla, Lemlist, Nike, Airbnb, Slack, Meta (Instagram, Facebook, Whatsapp), Paypal, Superhuman, Stripe, Supreme, and Linktree amongst many other hundreds of startups have also hit PMF.
Like Netflix, many of these brands identified customer demand to solve a problem and offered a solution (as a product), that has been iterated on over the years to become a superior product.
Many of these brands I mentioned went viral, people loved their products, and till now, their core customers are true stans; they have a strong brand connection.
This means that if Virality is always engineered from the get-go, so also, Brand Connection is engineered from the get-go too.
However, while this is Web3. It’s the same gameplay as Dan and Marc have explained, but now, the ethos is decentralised.
And this decentralised structure should normally encourage Web3 startups to facilitate brand-to-community relationships in their efforts to hit PMF.
Often they have failed to both facilitate such a relationship and also hit PMF.
I believe when we think of hitting PMF, we consistently look through the eyes of numbers and graphs.
When we have people who are our target audience, we can no longer observe marketing only from a quantitative standpoint, we should also observe from a qualitative standpoint.
When we do this, we’d begin to lean into the idea that Product Market Fit is Product People Fit or Product Customer Fit or Product Community Fit.
So you see, PMF is hinged on Brand Connection, which is a bowl of spice for multiple ingredients like:
.Customer Research and Validation,
.Iterative Product Development,
.Progressive feedback from customers that align with the brand’s Mission,
.Lean Marketing and Growth Strategies,
.User Onboarding and Retention,
.Measuring and Analyzing,
.Leveraging Early Adopters, and
.Pivoting if Necessary
All of these ingredients — which are important topics and will require a strategy to execute — when mixed, should help strengthen the Brand connection; which is the focus of this article.
Ultimately, they ensure Web3 brands build product people care about, love to use and would gladly refer their friends to. Products people Care about tend to always hit PMF.
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