Releasing a Product is Like Building a Campfire.
If you’ve ever built a camp fire you know as well as anyone that if you want a fire that keeps you warm and burn through the night, you do not put all of the kindling together pour kerosine on it and light it. It will burn up in no time and you will then have to try to build another one.
You have to first collect the logs that you will slowly put into the fire later to keep it going. That’s your future users and or future features. You put together just enough logs to get the fire going, sometimes just a few sticks will do, some dry grass or paper beneath them and then apply a match. A match is that initial idea, the sticks is your product and the paper or grass are those first few users who are most excited about your product. You light it and then you blow and blow and blow until there’s enough oxygen and fire to get those sticks to burn. And that’s when you start to put the larger logs, growing in size like a different market, a different and larger set of users until just about anything will burn. I remember throwing a wooden kitchen cabinet (bad idea by the way) onto a fire and it burned through the night.
So if you want to start a company and have it burn long and warm, remember to collect the right assortment of wood, assemble the small wooden pieces of initial product, light the first users or grass and then blow and tend to it like a little child and only then add the logs and add them until the fire is strong. Even then you will have to tend to it so that it doesn’t burn down the forest or die out leaving you cold in the night.
Good luck campers, I hope your fire will keep you and your customers warm and cozy through the night and for a long time after.
Thanks Yonk Shi of Polyfish for the analogy and inspiration.