How to Create the Perfect Product Map Using Surveys in 2023
The journey from an idea to a product seems complicated. There are plenty of steps involved:
- Evaluating your idea on many different levels,
- What problems does it solve,
- How it affects your target audience and, most importantly,
- How it will benefit your users;
These are a few crucial questions that are responsible for converting an idea into a product.
A Product Map is the most objective and definitive element that answers all these questions in a practical, straightforward, simple, and transparent manner.
A product map is the fundamental and primary document, usually depicting the journey of a vision in a visual format, encompassing the various building blocks, processes, strategies and the corresponding course of actions for them.
Not only does it act as the primary form of tangible existence for your product, but also serves to communicate the ideology, vision, mission, long-term and short-term goals, and future possibilities of your product idea.
Well, the objectives and purposes served by a product map, can't simply be limited to the scope of one section of this blog; and
It wouldn't do justice to the term, if we merely mentioned them here, instead of dedicating another detailed blog to it.
No wonder, one isn't surprised when they learn about Product Managers' CTCs.
Whilst there are several elements and components that go into the development of a Product Map,
The development process for any idea or product and its product map, essentially begins by gathering data, whether on a mental or physical level.
In other words, even for a good idea to occur, one must first access the data in their mind!
And once you have an idea, you gather data about if it can be converted into a product.
Which in turn leads you to ask,
What problem does it solve?
If that suffices to stress upon the importance of data gathering;
Let's talk about the most effective, simple and feasible way to gather data and answer all these product questions in a practical and actionable way; which is...
Digital Surveys are an incredible means of approaching and collecting data from your customers, target audience and potential buyers, in a fascinating, amicable, and yet effective fashion, on almost anything relating to your business, including products, services or even ideas.
And whilst they are not the only mediums of data collection;
If done rightly, they can definitely be a game-changer, pertaining to the various domains of any business; let alone, creating a product map.
Having said this, let's discuss,
How Surveys can help you along the Various Stages of developing a Product RoadMap
1. The Idea Stage
How many times has it happened that you've had an awesome idea, but you never thought of executing it, because you weren't sure how your target audience would respond to it;
Well, a survey is the best tool you can use for this.
Just put together a few crucial questions about your idea for a product/service, publish it on your website and have your users fill it.
If you don't have a website, you may also send your survey via e-mails, social media platforms and third-party platforms to gather submissions.
Once you have received submissions, analyze the data, gather insights and you'll be able to make a confident and informed decision about your idea.
Infact, you might be surprised to find more breakthroughs about it.
- If such a product (your product idea) were available in the market, would you buy it?
- Are you aware of any such other (To analyze competitor brand awareness) product?
- Would such a product effectively solve this problem (problem domain your idea solves)?
- What would you improve in such (your product idea) a product?
- How many people do you know of, who would be interested in such a product (your product idea)?
2. The Target Audience Stage
Having discussed the Idea stage, now you want to find out about your target audience;
Target Audience can be described as the correct set of people, who might be interested in the kind of product/service or even idea for it.
They are your potential customers and might even prove to be your supporters, in terms of feedback, promotions and even investments.
Platforms like KickStarter and Indiegogo are the best examples of this.
You may be pleased to see how a simple survey can bring you important data, about the kind of audience you might want to target.
- Would such a product interest you?
- On a scale of 1-5, how happy would you be, if this product was made available in the market?
- Would you recommend this product to your family and friends?
- On a scale of 1-10, how likely are you to use this product?
- Why or why not, would you invest in such a product?
While creating a survey to determine your target audience, ensure that you mark fields like age, gender, occupation, interests, location, etc., as compulsory or required;
Gathering data based on this, will help you see, identify and mark a pattern to recognize your target audience, in a pool of generic audiences, basis metrics like, demographics, age-groups, gender, etc.
3. Feature Selection and Improvement Stage
The most critical stage of product development is the development of its associated features, which collectively make the finalized complete product.
Evidently, it is essential to have data about this.
Not only do you want to have feedback, suggestions and opinions about the features which you developed;
But also, remain open and encourage ideas, use-cases, and applications you might not have considered.
The responses received may lead to several breakthroughs and help you put your best foot forward, with the product.
Some of the best products are the ones, which have been developed keeping in mind consumer perspectives and opinions.
Moreover, your audience or potential customers will be more excited and engaged to welcome your product to the market!
- Do you think the features offered by this product are sufficient?
- Are all the features easy to use?
- If there was one feature, which you could improve, what would it be and why?
- Is there any other feature that can be added?
- Which feature excites you the most?
4. Timeline and Development Stage
Once you're sure about your product, its features, and your target audience, the next phase is assessing your timelines and development strategy.
If you're confident about your product, optimistic about its performance in the market, and have involved your target audience in this process;
Then it will be only rewarding to do the same while making the timeline and development strategy.
Ask your survey-takers, if they are happy with the timelines you have set, to launch the features of the product or product itself.
Brief them about the development stage you're at, such as the landing page, website, app, etc.
It is essential to ask these questions because, not only are you trying to market your ideas and product;
But also develop meaningful relationships and kinship towards your brand and product;
Because chances are highly likely that now your product is being talked about, and your competitors' are also keeping a close watch.
Under such circumstances, not only is it essential to have trademarks and copyrights in place;
But also make your target audience aware, loyal and excited for what's coming.
- Do you think the product is worth its price?
- Have you heard of any such other products?
- If this product was made available in the market by (timeline), would you buy it?
- How sooner would you like for this product to be made available to you?
- Do you think some of the feature developments can wait? If yes, which ones and why?
5. Launch and Promotional Events
It is good to have decided on significant events, such as feature launches, product launches, promotional events, etc.
This is the right place to ask your audience what kind of an event they would prefer, such as a physical meet-up, virtual launch, etc.
Ask them, apart from the product, what else do they expect from you as a brand, and prepare for such questions.
Have engaging activities lined up, as part of these promotional and launch events.
Work with a Media Kit if possible.
- Would you rather join this event over a virtual platform or at (physical location)?
- Would you be interested in bringing your friends to this event?
- Would you like to know about the product back-story?
- Are you curious about our brand story?
- Do you have a special association with this brand/product?
6. Existing Product Optimization
Product maps are not just limited to new creations and ideas. If you already have products with a ready product map;
You can create surveys for them as well!
You may gather information about how your product is performing in the market, how your customers are liking it, and if they have any suggestions or feedback for the same.
Once you have such insights, you always have the option to tweak your existing product-map to be a better fit for your customers and your industry standard.
- What made you choose us over (competitor brand)?
- What would you change about this product?
- Which feature do you use the most?
- Which feature would you have somewhat improved?
- Which features impress you the most?
Once you're ready with your survey, placing it in the proper settings is the next important step.
Here are the...
Top 6 Places where your Survey is likely to Gather Effective and Accurate Responses
If you already have a business with an associated website and you're looking forward to add more features or launch a child product;
Then your own website would be the best place to start with.
Considering you have some sources of pre-established and consistent traffic and a customer base, it is highly likely that you gain submissions on your website.
Assuming that your website visitors are either your customers or atleast interested in your services, the responses received here, would be highly credible.
2. Mobile Application
In a similar fashion to your website, if your business has an associated mobile app that your clients use, then as mentioned above, you may place your survey over there.
Pro Tip: Design a clickable pop-up banner advertisement with a link to your survey. Offer a reward for your survey-takers and mention it on this banner.
3. Third-party Platforms
You can tie-up with third-party survey distributors, who offer to advertise and feature your survey on their platforms, such as websites, apps, blogs, etc.
The concept is similar to affiliate marketing, except that they're featuring your surveys, instead of a product or website of yours.
Popular websites can prove to be an incredible source of response gathering and also bring valuable traction to your website.
4. Social Media Platforms
Social Media Accounts and handles can also be considerable platforms. They are popular and engaging, and people have higher retention rates there.
You can mention the link to your survey in your account bio, make a post including this survey link, and even use paid advertising to gather submissions.
5. E-mail Surveys
Suppose you have an emailing list and regularly send out newsletters, promotional advertisements, offers, etc.
In that case, you may use the same emailing list to send out your surveys as well.
Infact, emails can be customized to give a personal touch for each of your users.
This, in-turn, renders a higher chance of response rate.
6. Survey Platforms
It might or might not be news to you that there are, infact, businesses and companies that specifically feature surveys and pay people in return for genuine responses.
Whilst most people like to participate here as a side-hustle, businesses can rely on such platforms for authentic survey responses.
Branded Surveys is a popular example of such a platform.
It is not enough to simply create and publish a survey.
Once you receive responses, you have to have an efficient data analysis system in place.
Such a system will help you make the most out of your survey results, by giving you powerful and actionable insights which enable you to make crucial decisions in an informed manner.
You'll be able to take calculated risks and make wiser investments.
That said, here are some of the...
Top 4 Metrics You Should Track for a Product RoadMap Survey
Net Promoter Score, as the name itself suggests, is the metric that determines the customers' satisfaction and loyalty towards your brand and, in-turn, their likelihood of recommending, sharing or promoting your brand in their circle.
It is an effective metric to track your performance with your established customer base, and also measure the probability of your brand growth basis their referrals.
When considering a product map, you should ask questions that help you gauge your audiences' excitement and amiability, if you were to improve an existing feature/product or introduce a new one.
Formula: NPS = % of Promoters - % of Detractors
2. Customer Effort Score
This metric is used to track down the ease with which your customers are able to access or find out about your product.
These are used to determine the points where your customers have to put in additional efforts on their end to use or find out more information about the product.
You want to figure out all such points and work on simplifying them for your users.
When it comes to developing a product map, you may brief your respondents about the usability functions which you have defined for your feature/product, and ask them if they would be able to use it conveniently, and if not, what would be a better replacement.
Formula: CES score = (Total sum of responses) ÷ (Number of responses)
3. Customer Acquisition Cost
This metric measures your ROI against your investments for marketing, sales, promotions, advertising and branding, cumulatively.
When developing a product roadmap, you can easily find out which marketing strategies or sales tactics are working, if you focus on asking questions that help you determine, what attracted your customers to you, what made them click on your advertisement, or was there any particular content that clearly communicated to them, the product's main functionality.
Formula: Customer Acquisition Cost = Cost of Sales and Marketing divided by the Number of New Customers Acquired
It is also important to measure the usability of the product/feature and its associated elements, such as websites, apps, etc.
Although there are several elements of usability, the overall aspect primarily deals with User-experience;
It can be measured across several domains.
A Product Map is the first tangible expression any product or feature finds. Its creation, therefore, becomes inevitably essential.
It is designed to communicate your product's vision, mission, goals, objectives and functionality.
If done rightly, a well-designed Product Map can not only help you gain a large customer base, but also build your brand image, find potential investors and curate meaningful, loyal and long-term relationships with your customers.
At the end of the day, a Product Map is designed to accomplish the goal of being on the same page with your customers!
However, most might not be aware of how to attain this goal;
And here comes the role of;
- gathering feedback, suggestions and opinions,
- their analysis and obtaining insights, and,
- finally taking thoughtful decisions, calculated risks and making wiser investments.
And who would've thought, surveys or digital surveys, for today's digital world, would be one such tool, that encompasses all these aspects!
As many survey platforms are available today, it is challenging to choose which one is right for you;
And to make that decision easier for you,
We at Formester, have pre-designed customizable Templates, with powerful analytics and more advanced features, starting free;
So you can make the most out of your Surveys!