As everyone else makes new year’s resolutions and commitments on things to do over the next year I will tell you what not to do this year.
Here’s what I will urge our customers and partners to stop and start doing in 2016:
1. Fictitious MVPs
Stop: Turning MVPs, lean and agile product development into 10+ month long projects with fixed scope, budget and timeline and scope creeps. You are doing it wrong!
Start: Sticking to your 3-5 month MVP even if you don’t have all the features or robustness that you want, release and improve. The first release/beta to users is the beginning of a long journey and not the end.
2. Big Data Buzz
Stop: Talking about big data, algorithms and predictive analytics when you don’t even know how many engaged users your website, product or mobile app has and what your customers use and want.
Start: Focusing on the slightly smaller data first. Get analytics right! Test your analytics of the user engagement funnel to ensure that you understand your users’ behavior over time.
3. Mobile Ad Waste
Stop: Wasting money on mobile advertising based on CPM, CPC and CPA to drive downloads or website visits unless you can track real return of investment. A couple of years ago it was reported that 50% of all ad clicks are accidental. With native ads this percentage has probably increased further.
Start: Basing your mobile marketing on the end goal and then test and optimize to get your media mix and advertising right. Analytics and user feedback are a necessity. Understand the usage funnel from click to transaction (or whatever it is you want to achieve).
4. Ignoring Your Customers
Stop: Developing mobile services (or any digital services) without ongoing user testing and feedback unless you’re Steve Jobs’ spirit successor.
Start: Involving your users every step along the way of product development. From initial concept and design to each sprint of the development process until acceptance. More importantly you should expect and plan for at least 1/3 of your scope to change based on this feedback.
Stop: Jumping from task to task, distracting yourself with e-mails or social media while in meetings, conference calls or talking to other people. Only about 2% of the population can handle more than one task at the same time.
Start: Focusing on doing one thing at the time well and you will most likely have a more productive 2016. This goes for your mobile plan as well as your personal plans and tasks.
What will you start and stop doing in 2016?
Magnus Jern, President DMI International