Notion, Roam Research, and Hey, which were very popular last year, are typical Opinionated Products.
Opinionated Products are products with their own clear values that apply better processes and methods to scenarios to solve user problems. Such products often challenge traditional concepts and habits, which we translate as "idea products".
This concept was first proposed by the famous 37signals company in 2007. They believed that a good product should not be too flexible, but should have edges and corners, vision and values. When users are looking for products, they are not just looking for functions, but also looking for good methods (“They say software should always be as flexible as possible. We think that's bullshit. The best software has a vision. The best software takes sides . When country email list someone uses software, they're not just looking for features, they're looking for an approach”).
They themselves have launched a series of personalized products based on this concept, such as Basecamp, Ruby on Rails, Hey, etc. Therefore, Opinionated Product is a way of product differentiation, and it is also one of the most lethal weapons.
1. Three waves of product differentiation
There are three waves of product differentiation abroad:
1. The first time was in the 1980s
Tools to promote work efficiency began to appear, and after a long iteration, these types of products have become very large, clustering a bunch of functions on the flesh.
The well-known Outlook and Office three-piece suites have a bunch of functions on the top rainbow toolbar. Maybe you have used them for 10 years, and you will only use 10% of the core basic capabilities. Of course, in that era, Microsoft became the biggest winner.
2. The second time was around 2000
The emergence of cloud products emphasizes the rapid development of products based on low-cost cloud infrastructure, and the automatic synchronization of data in the cloud.
3. The third wave of product differentiation is now
We can see that various products in the traditional user area are being disrupted, including mail, forms, documents, etc. The old-fashioned products are rich in functions and flexible, and they also accumulate a large amount of user data. At this time, if you want to change user behavior, convert/abandon historical data, just relying on good functions and beautiful design will not be able to leverage users.
Users need more impactful products that bring greater value. That requires, in addition to the function itself, to be able to empower enterprises and teams through better workflows and methods. This is the market opportunity for the third wave of product differentiation, and the practices of such products are generally:
Background: In a mature market, old-fashioned products have been occupied for many years, and it is difficult to leverage;
According to user scenarios, discover what problems exist in existing products;
Build a strong and efficient process and method, express it in product design, and then develop it for marketing.