While I was going through Y Combinator, a partner had told me that the main reasons most startups die, is because they never find Product Market Fit.
It’s a funny concept.
Product Market Fit means having a product that can satisfy a “good” market.
There has been a lot of material written about this concept but I would like to purpose my own contribution, that the search for Product Market Fit is the marriage between engineering and advertising.
The traditional advice goes something along the lines of, pick a reasonable problem, build a MVP, then talk to your users and build what they ask for. That maybe if you solve enough of their problems your product will be good enough that a big enough market of people will want it.
I can’t being to express how many just ridiculously talented software engineers I have met, people insanely smarter than me, who run around in circles trying to find Product Market Fit.
If it’s the role of a software engineer to build the product, it’s the role of the advertiser to understand the market.
Product Market Fit is a 42% Click Through Ratio
If you can’t find your market through some form of digital advertising, your product is “probably” doomed.
There are over 3,500,000,000 Goole searches every single day. There are over 500,000,000 daily active users on Instagram.
If none of those people are searching for or interested in your product, I have some really bad news about your target market. If you run ads for a product that has very strong Product Market Fit, it turns out, people really want the product – it’s super simple.
People searching for a business lawyer, want a business lawyer.
People searching for a cleaning service, want a cleaning service.
People searching for a CRDT, they probably want a CRDT.
Advertising teaches you how to target different markets, figure out what people are looking for, and learn how to offer them the right product in the right way. It’s the absolute easiest way to “find product market fit”. Mock up some ads and show them to people.
They don’t have to be the best ads, and you don’t “actually” need a 42% click through rate if your growth strategy isn’t paid acquisition.
Turns out my users were much more interested in a “Stateful Serverless API” than a “Multiplayer Engine”, and I am one step closer to building a product that meets the needs of my target market. 🚀