#LAFI Chapter 6: You’ll Like This Product Development Process

Today, we were lucky to have Robert Tercek talk to us about creativity in the work place. I was very happy to hear him talk about the importance of having a creative process. I once interned at a creative agency that had a 300+ index card deck of brainstorming processes for company use only; I read every single card and memorized many of them.

My company has a very unique product development process. We can’t say if the process works until the product is fully developed, but I’m excited to see the results. Our product development process is deeply integrated with our marketing and business development strategy, while allowing us to generate revenue immediately. We additionally design by coding and design mobile to web.

To give you a quick background, my company EventBRO is making mobile technology readily available for all event planners. I’m talking about allowing event organizers to easily create a free event website optimized for mobile devices integrated with scheduling, photos, videos, social media and QR codes. At a B2C level, we’ll place ads on free event websites with the option to pay a small fee to remove it. At a B2B level, we license, rebrand, and repackage our product for large events and event venues. (Please feel free to email me with feedback or comments)

Integrating Product Development and Marketing

As of today, I don’t know if I should market my product to private events, farmer’s markets, schools, festivals, music venues, or trade shows. Since I already have a working prototype to show event organizers, I’ve been able to find potential customers who are interested in our B2B solution. I then work hand-in-hand with these events to create the exact mobile event website they want, and then create a template out of it for our product. The necessity for me to reach out to organizers of every type of event, as market research, allows me to learn more about what they need by actually developing the product with them. Our marketing team works directly with our product development team.

Integrating Product Development and Business Development

As I mentioned above, I’m working hand-in-hand with each type of event to create my product. By working with the event organizers to create and monitor the website, I learn more about the market, which allows me to make decisions on an appropriate business strategy. It’s arguable that it’s good to have such a flexible business model, but I’m a fan of keeping my options open. Our product development team works directly with our business development team.

Generating Revenue Immediately

It’s only been a week since I started developing my product, but if you go to http://m.eventbro.com* today from your phone, we provide a service for free, that no one else provides. You can easily create a mobile optimized event website with basic event info, with a QR code that’s automatically generated. In addition to that, you can see one of my prototype B2B solutions I created with information from the Founder Institute website at http://eventbro.com/founderinstitute*. My point is, I can pitch to an event organizer today, a service we can provide that’s well worth their money. They’d have a mobile event website ready within two weeks. In a sense, our product development strategy starts with our sales team.

*The mobile websites looks best on an iPhone.

Design by Coding

This was inspired by an article on Quora called Life Without Photoshop, that talks about how every part of Quora was designed without photoshop, by code, from day 1. It allows for a solid code structure that’s consistent and reusable, keeps the UI simple, and allows you to test a working prototype immediately.

Design Mobile to Web

As of now, I don’t know of anybody whose taken this product development approach. I’m creating the entire website and it’s functionality optimized for mobile web first, and then translating that into a website. This allows me to mess around with (read: test) and show off my product (read: marketing) anywhere, at anytime. This also forces me to have simple UI with clear categorization of functionalities.

Note: Currently, I am the designer, developer, marketer, biz dev and sales guy. I could use a co-founder.

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