Gone Are The Days Of A Minimum Viable Product (It's All About the Minimum Lovable Product Now)
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I was always an advocate for jumping in head-first whenever I wanted to start anything. But as I matured and got exposed to more and more businesses, my views have slightly changed.
I was talking to one of my clients this morning who has founded a successful mass fast-fashion brand and wants to launch another one in the high-end spectrum. When we first started talking, they wanted to launch a version of their product, and then change based on the market’s feedback. However, sometimes brands won’t make it that far, especially high-end ones.
Long lost and long gone are the days when all entrepreneurs were advised to launch what we used to call a minimum viable product (MVP). Now, however, is the era of the minimum lovable product. Instead of launching the first working prototype of your concept, launch the minimum version that some people will absolutely fall in love with. These people, you will find, are your biggest asset, as they will be in the core of the circle of influence that the brand has.
An MVP does not achieve that, though. It encourages entrepreneurs to launch a sloppy version of their brand that some of the people who may have otherwise been fans might end up hating. And this is a big lost opportunity for the business. An MLP, on the other hand, puts the customer at the center of the design process and takes into account what s/he will most likely like the most.
As is the case with any business or idea, there will always be people who dislike it. This thought is scary for some people, but it shouldn’t be. The minimum viable product does not allow potential customers to absolutely hate the version, but it also cannot be loved because it probably lacks personality. Whereas a minimum lovable product understands that some people will fall in love with it, while others may not like it at all.
Put in some more time and effort with your brand so that it stands out among the clutter, and it has a special “secret sauce” before you make your first launch. Don’t just settle for the minimum that works under the excuse of getting it out there and testing. For the people who think a product or a service is mediocre, it is very difficult to win them back.
In either case, there will be changes, iterations, and reiterations. Change is constant and inevitable. But as we always say, anything that is not hated by some cannot be loved by others.