Harsha Halvi's Blog |||

Escape Velocity and Products

I still remember asking my physics teacher as to why can’t i throw my pencil into space when i was in 6th grade: That day i learnt something called Escape Velocity. Couple of years, as a founder and product owner i asked my engineering team why can’t we ship X in a day or a week. When i finally understood everything about Gravity, Mass and Velocity a lot of things made sense and a lot did not. Similarly when i donned the Product Manager’s cape i ended up learning that there are three things that matter a lot to every product and also anything that needs to take off or go down: Gravity : How hard is is to get off the ground Mass :How much should we do to get enough speed for a lift off Velocity : Direction is everything and if you fail to send anything without a direction your prodect ends up no where.

Pushing things for takeoffPushing things for takeoff

#Gravity: Think of this as something that can be called cost of doing biz, things like Product Marketing, Sales, Branding and all of the associated activities to achieve Market Penetration for your product ends up setting your course for the product. Most of the times you can keep tabs on these values by looking at things like CAC(Cost of Acquisition), LTV (Life Time Validity) and ARPU (Average Returns Per User).

The general consenus is the higer the gravity levels the more firepower you need to give your product a good liftoff.

#Mass: What are the parts that add a lot of value (weight) that your product passes the following stages : usable, marketable and billable. These are essentially the roadmaps for building things to help you scale and double down to capture market share. This is the part that is the most valuable that ends up multiplying a lot of factors.

Mostly the values here are strongly correlated with the building blocks of Gravity (CAC,LTV,ARPU and the likes)

#Velocity: Not knowing where to go is often the same as not going anywhere”. Knowing where a product (or a rocket) should go is often one of the things that a lot of first time founders miss (I did it as well). You need north stars to determine if the product is going in the right direction or not and that is why often Velocity is a better thing to monitor than speed. The metrics of Speed in these cases are DAU,WAU,MAU and the likes and Velocity is often determined by a metric that strongly determines what your product (or rockets) is doing or not doing.

These values are the thrusters + fins that power it are gonna help determine how far your product (or rocket can go).

So what are you going to power your Product or Rocket with? :)

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