How to Build Products Users Love with Kevin Hale (How to Start a Startup 2014: Lecture 7) | Summary and Q&A

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How to Build Products Users Love with Kevin Hale (How to Start a Startup 2014: Lecture 7)


This talk discusses how to build products that users love by focusing on values, creating remarkable first impressions, and maintaining strong long-term relationships.

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Key Insights

  • šŸ’¼ Growth is a function of conversion rate and churn, and looking at it from a more human perspective can lead to better product development.
  • šŸŒŸ The best way to achieve success is by focusing on the values that help you acquire your first user and dollar.
  • šŸ¢ The way a company is run can be different and successful, even as an outlier compared to other startups in terms of funding and valuation.
  • šŸ¤ First impressions are important for building relationships, both in personal life and in product interactions.
  • šŸ’” Pay attention to the first moments of interaction with users, as they can have a big impact on their overall experience and willingness to continue using the product.
  • šŸ’¼ Customer support is crucial for building long-term relationships, and it is important to address users' concerns and needs effectively.
  • šŸ“š Research shows that there are only three ways to achieve market dominance: best price, best product, or best overall solution. Building a customer-centric product can help achieve the best overall solution. ā° Remote working can be successful if there is accountability and a disciplined approach to managing time and tasks.
  • šŸ’Ŗ Injecting values of responsibility, accountability, humility, and modesty into the company culture can lead to better product development and customer support.
  • šŸ‘„ Hiring people who align with the company culture and giving them ownership and responsibilities can help create a unified and accountable team.


all right so when I talk about making products users love what I mean specifically is like how do we make things that has a passionate user base that our users are unconditionally wanting it to be successful both on the products that we build but also the companies behind them we're going to go over tons of information try not to take too many note... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: How can focusing on values help a company build a passionate user base?

Focusing on values helps a company build a passionate user base because values create a connection between the company and the user, leading to a stronger relationship and a deeper level of love and loyalty for the product.

Q: How can creating remarkable first impressions contribute to the success of a product?

Creating remarkable first impressions helps set the tone for the user's experience with the product, leaving a lasting impact and increasing the chances of them becoming a loyal user. It also encourages positive word-of-mouth, driving organic growth.

Q: How can injecting responsibility and accountability into the development process improve the quality of a product?

Injecting responsibility and accountability into the development process ensures that developers and designers are actively involved in customer support and are aware of the consequences of their actions. This leads to higher-quality products and a better user experience.

Q: Why is customer support important in building successful products?

Customer support is crucial in building successful products because it helps bridge the gap between the company and the user, provides valuable feedback for improving the product, and creates a strong customer relationship that leads to long-term success.

Q: How can a company balance focusing on product development with marketing and other business activities?

It is important for a company to strike a balance between product development and marketing. While product development is crucial for building a great product, marketing and other business activities help create awareness and drive adoption. It is important to prioritize both and allocate resources accordingly.

Q: How can remote working affect company culture and productivity?

Remote working can have both positive and negative impacts on company culture and productivity. It requires extra discipline and communication to ensure that employees feel connected and accountable. Implementing systems and processes, such as clear communication channels and regular check-ins, can help maintain a strong company culture and ensure productivity.

Q: What are some ways to instill accountability in employees?

One way to instill accountability in employees is to have clear performance measures and reward systems in place. Setting goals and expectations, providing regular feedback and support, and encouraging open communication can also help create a culture of accountability. Additionally, creating a culture where employees are empowered to take ownership of their work and make decisions can also contribute to accountability.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Building products that users love is about creating a passionate user base and building a strong relationship with them.

  • Focusing on values and creating remarkable first impressions are crucial in building successful products.

  • Taking a human-scale approach to growth, prioritizing customer support, and injecting responsibility and accountability into the development process can lead to long-term success.

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