How do you shape your idea into a product that customers love and will pay for? It’s easy to find resources designed to help you start building right away. Despite the wide availability of tools, like the lean startup method, “no market need” remains the No. 1 cause of failure.

How can you ensure that your product addresses a need that matters to customers enough to move them to pay for a solution? Developing and iterating on hypotheses about the problem and target audience requires customer research, such as surveys, interviews, ethnography, and low-fi prototype testing. Each approach has a different cost, time and effort. Which is most helpful when? Faculty and serial entrepreneurs share their product insights and provide useful tips on problem identification, customer discovery, and market research.

Turn Your Idea into a Product Users Want: Identify the Right Problem

Ready to start building a prototype? Before you start, it's important to validate that the problem your product addresses is a problem worth solving. Julia Austin, Senior Lecturer at HBS and expert in product development, shares helpful tips and tools to help you ensure that you're on the right track.

9 min read
Image of piece of blue paper with a piece peeled back to reveal "Uncover Your Customer Needs." This illustrates customer interviewing tecniques that can help founders uncover meaningful data

Customer Interviewing Techniques That Uncover Your Users’ Unmet Needs

Customer interviews can help you understand users' needs and yield invaluable data. But often, people ask questions that yield irrelevant responses that send them in the wrong direction. Julia Austin and Wendy Tsu share their insights on how to conduct better customer interviews to obtain more meaningful feedback and gain a deeper understanding of market needs.

11 min read