Discuss Home · Bootstrapped Podcast · Scribbleton Personal Wiki · HelpSpot Customer Service Software · Thermostat NPS

"Some problems can't be solved with minimum viable products"


This. Adwords is a tricky beast. Inexperienced people could easily be missing on 90% or more of targeted potential traffic.

Setting up an Adwords campaign to efficiently target the right people for a known product is a time-consuming project in itself. If you’ve never done it before it can take months to get right (and even if you’re experienced, it’s still a process).

Personally I wouldn’t put too much weight on the results of an adwords campaign.

There is also the question of the landing pages. These are typically optimized over weeks or months. A small mistake, the wrong choice of words can kill your conversion rate.

If you get crappy results from an unoptimized adwords campaign and an unoptimized landing page, what have you proved exactly? Is it the product? Is it the price? Or is it the fact that your marketing campaign isn’t there yet?


Thanks @Andy and @Oliver. I am definitely an Adwords novice so chalking this up to not really proving anything here. I am going to do another direct outreach to my contacts and try to drive launch list sign ups that way for now. I did not have a launch page setup the last time.

I’m thinking of steering clear of paid acquisition until I firm up the marketing message. Thanks for your help.



I’m not paying a penny on promoting http://www.keywordfunnel.com until I have something to sell.


Amongst the many things I’ve read about an MVP I think Mike nails this misunderstanding. Don’t build an MVP until you have a specific question that needs answering.


How did PayPal react to that? I was under the impression that a lot of refunds put you in their bad books.


Good question.

PayPal didn’t seem to care. It was only about 10-15 refunds and for a total of around $500. I had that account for several years in advance. That’s chump change and not likely to cross any fraud tripwires.

The fact is the refunds were initiated by me, not by the customer. Were it the other way around, I could see it hitting some of those tripwires and having the account temporarily suspended until I sorted it out with them.


I think you can certainly validate the PAIN and that’s the critical part. Even if your MVP doesn’t solve the pain perfectly at least you are directionally-accurate.

But if you have misidentified a pain (maybe the customer doesn’t feel it or it doesn’t exist for them) then no tweaking will get you to product-market fit.

The secret to finding a needle in a haystack?
Starting in the right haystack

  • me

Key questions to ask in customer research:

  1. How do you solve this problem currently?
    . (It might be a station wagon full of magnetic tape drives. )
  2. Have you searched for another solution?
    If it’s no to both, that suggests they don’t see it as a pain and you have an education problem.

Amazing Article on this