How the product/market fit feels like
Since we all have different products and markets, I can’t tell you how to understand if your product fits the market. But as an entrepreneur who has failed twice and succeeded once, at least I can tell you how it ‘feels like’ when you have product/market fit.
I have founded two startups, Snitch and The Wall, which never had the product/market fit. When I look back, I see common signals and feelings. Everything was perfect, we were great at development and marketing and the ideas are also exciting and visionary. Our friends and even our potential customers/users were also saying the same. There was no reason to fail. But when we launched, the market didn’t care. Why? Because those reactions to our products are not even close to a product/market fit. I found out that when I have the product/market fit for the first time in my life.
On Snitch and The Wall, we were pitching our ideas to our potential users and trying to convince them on using our products instead of talking about their problems and trying to understand them. And yes, all of them said ‘Yeah cool, I might use it’ because we were young and they were kind. So they just didn’t want to discourage a bunch of kids. That’s how it feels like when you don’t have the product/market fit. People will say that your product is cool and they might give it a try. Don’t be silly, that’s not the reaction when you show people a product they really need. The market doesn’t care your fucking visionary ideas, it cares solutions of real problems.
Then I founded Boostfy, which people forced me to build it. And I finally learned what is product/market fit looks like. I was on a US trip and shooting some photos for fun. One of the models told me about a strategy that helps her to increase her audience on Instagram. So I decided to try it as well. All of the models that saw me doing it were like ‘WAIT, WHAT?’ and asked me to build a product for them to automate this strategy. I thought it’s stupid idea and can’t be a company and didn’t want to build it. So I made a decision, I was going to ask someone to pay for it before it even doesn’t exist. Called a friend of mine who works in a company as marketing manager and asked for a meeting. They agreed to pay more than $100 for a month and even paid cash for 6 months usage. That was the moment I was convinced to start Boostfy.
So don’t fool yourself if your potential customers are not begging you to build your idea. All of the nice things you hear are just because of their kindness.
Don’t mind me but there is a quote of a famous entrepreneur: “Traction is like an orgasm, you know when you have it.” I think it can be said for product/market fit as well.