I find too many entrepreneurs who follow the lean methodology stuck in a product spin, and consumed with their Minimum Viable Product. And it’s ironic, because while I often hear about the importance of product market fit, not enough consideration is given to the designation of the market side of this equation. Yet we all know your product isn’t going to fit the entire market from day one! So while the MVP is critical, it’s missing its dance partner, what I call the Minimum Viable Segment (MVS).
MVS is about focusing on a market segment of potential customers that have the same needs to which you can align. Defining and focusing on your MVS is vital because without it, potential users who have divergent needs will quickly pull your MVP in many different directions. This in turn will bloat rather than minimize your product requirements and drain your limited startup resources. And that sucking sound won’t just be felt in product development but also in any Go To Market (GTM) activities, and then later on in service and support, potentially paralyzing your Business Model.