How to Develop a Product Vision • Windmill

How to Develop a Product Vision

Moenika Chowdhury
  • UX & Design

A product vision statement is a valuable tool that tells the outside world where your product is heading and what you hope to achieve. Creating a product vision statement should be the first step in launching any new product and its importance should not be overlooked! 

This blog will tell you everything you need to know about a product vision, with tips on how to write a compelling vision statement for your next project.  

What is a product vision?

A product vision, also known as a product vision statement, is the core essence of your product. It outlines the long-term goal of your product and your reasons for creating it.  

Product vision examples
  • Google: “To provide access to the world’s information in one click.”
  • LinkedIn: “To create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce.”
  • Apple: “A revolutionary phone, an iPod, and an internet communicator together in one product. Apple reinvents the phone”.

 

Suggested reading: Product Vision Examples That Define Great Products

Product mission vs vision

Many people confuse mission with vision, but there are some key differences between the two. Crayond explains how the product vision is the ‘what’ and the product mission is the ‘why’.

A product vision statement focuses on the reasons behind creating the product while the product mission statement focuses on actions and bringing all tasks together.

Why is a product vision statement important? 

Aligns your product development team 

Your product vision statement reminds all team members and stakeholders about the shared goal they’re trying to achieve with the product. This helps to bring your team together and reminds them of why they’re doing what they’re doing. 

Improves chances of success 

Did you know that almost 95% of new products launched every year are likely to fail? Or that  50% of product development teams fail to have a consistent or well-prepared process?

A clear product vision statement will help you create an effective product strategy. This will improve your chances of launching a new product to the market successfully and gaining revenue. 

Creates a better product roadmap

Another benefit of a product vision statement is that it will help you create a better product roadmap. You can use the information in your product vision to create a strategic guide and action plan for your product development team to follow. 

Improves team productivity 

Your product vision statement will give your team a clearly defined vision and goal. This will improve workplace productivity and help you achieve your business objectives faster. 

Enables faster decision-making

A product vision statement gives your team a clear direction and helps them make faster and better decisions throughout the product development journey. 

When is a product vision needed? 

A product vision statement should be created whenever you start developing a new product. It can also be a useful tool to align your team when you are making updates or tweaks to existing products. 

Who creates the product vision statement? 

Writing a product vision statement is a complex task and requires careful planning and teamwork. Invite team members and relevant stakeholders to get involved and organise a creative brainstorming session to discuss ideas.

You should aim to answer key questions such as:

  • Who is your target user? 
  • Who are your competitors? 
  • What are your product USPs?
  • What challenges does your product help users overcome? 
  • What is the product development timeframe and budget?

planing

TIP: One effective method is to ask each team member to write down their goal for the product. You can then compare and discuss everyone’s answers and come up with a product vision by the end of the session. 

What is a product vision template? 

A product vision template is designed to help you create an effective vision statement for your product. The book Crossing the Chasm by Geoffrey Moore provides the following product vision template for business: 

For (target customer) who (statement of need or opportunity), the (product name) is a (product category) that (key benefit, reason to buy).

Unlike (primary competitive alternative), our product (statement of primary differentiation).

What are the desirable qualities of a product vision?

  • Achievable: A product vision can be ambitious, but make sure that it is also realistic.
  • Customer-focused: A good product vision should be customer-focused and provide value to your target audience. 
  • Concise: A product vision statement should be short and concise. Most product vision statements are only one or two sentences. 
  • Accessible: Your team should be able to access your product vision statement easily. 
  • Inspirational: Your product vision should inspire, excite and motivate your team. Make sure that your end goal is clear and easy for your team to visualize.  

5 tips for creating a product vision 

  1. Align your vision with your mission: Your product vision statement should be aligned with your company mission and values.
  2. Create an agile product vision: Your team should have the flexibility to adjust the plan to achieve the product vision at any time needed.  
  3. Organise an empathy mapping session: Empathy mapping is a technique that many companies use to create product vision statements. It involves improving your team’s understanding of your customers and aligning them around a common ideal/goal. 
  4. Use a product vision template: Using a template, like the one mentioned above, will make the process much easier and faster. You can also use a product vision board tool to help you set clear goals and objectives for your product. 
  5. Run a product vision workshop: Invite your team to a product vision workshop with the goal of agreeing on a clear product vision statement. 

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Suggested reading: How to Run a Product Vision Workshop

Summary 

A product vision statement is an essential tool that will help your team stay on track and achieve your desired business objectives. When used correctly, a product vision will align your product development team, improve productivity, and increase sales revenue.

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