In this interview I spoke with Nis Frome co-founder of Alpha. Alpha helps enterprises get access to consumer insights rapidly. Alpha’s platform enables management teams to make data-driven decisions about users, products, and markets. By streamlining the workflow to source a target audience, design interactive prototypes, and run experiments, Alpha’s end-to-end platform lets you go from plain-English questions to on-demand user insights in two days.
Experimentation is the means by which products improve so it's natural for every product manager or company leader to try and find ways to experiment faster. Faster experimentation leads to a higher pace of innovation and can be done in the product design phase or in the improvement phase.
For example when you are creating a brand new product either in an existing company or in a startup the product managers need to get some sense of what the customer, or user, of the product might think or feel about and how it does or does not solve a problem for them.
And after a product is launched the product manager also need to stay in touch with existing users as well as the prospective users who have not selected to use this new product to find out why.
So experimentation is a regular, and critical part of every product manager. The challenge is it take a lot of resources and time to get the user feedback before product enhancements are designed.
For online products such as ecommerce or SaaS apps the analytics and metrics give an immediate signal as to how the users like any change but there is not such a system for taking user input on products that have not been designed yet. Alpha has created a system to get user feedback on products and feature in a couple of days which solves this problem to a significant degree.
Some of the topics we discussed:
On how Alpha helps customers:
- They teach companies how to ask the right questions.
- Idea Research as a Service.
- Best practices on data-driven decision making.
- Quick feedback from audiences you are disconnected from.
On hiring product managers:
- How to hire product managers for breakthrough or incremental innovation and the mix.
- Domain expertise vs. knowing how to experiment.
- How Learning can combine with creativity for the best product outcomes.
- Love-to-learn vs. love-to-be-right and the love of experimentation, feeling comfortable in chaios and the false sense of control.
Also a great discussion on innovation and Day 1 at the end. (one of my top favorite topics..)
And here's a link to the 2018 Product Management Insights report by Alpha.
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