Working Backwards: A New Version Of Amazon’s “Press Release” Approach To Plan Customer-Centric Projects – The Digital Project Manager

1. What did you ship?

What is the name of the product and what does it do? Can you explain it in layman’s terms? What is the scope of the project[2] and how does it work?

2. What customer problems does it solve?

This is one of the key components I wanted to clarify in my iteration of this technique. What does this new product help your users or customers do better? More quickly or efficiently? How does it make THEM more successful? This is key to building a customer-centric solution that actually delivers value.

Remember that this is not a listing of features. Your customers don’t want to hear something like “calendar integration” in this section but rather, “Allows users to never miss another meeting regardless of where that meeting information can be found.”

3. How do you know the problem solved those problems?

This is the other piece that was missing in the original versions of this tool. What measurable changes in customer behavior have you observed to indicate that you have indeed solved the problem for your customers and that they love this product?

A great way to get the team thinking about this question now, rather than after your launch, is by asking them, “If we build and launch the best product, what will our users be doing differently than they are today?”

4. What business benefit has been achieved?

Now that our customers are successful, how has that translated into business benefits? Are we making more money? Have we reduced our costs? Is it easier to acquire new customers? In other words, why do we as businesses care about this product?

5. Internal quote from someone involved or invested in this project and its success.

Provide a quote that focuses on how this project improved the customer experience and why the business took it on. This should come from someone involved in the process and invest in its success.

6. Provide a customer quote sharing how this new product made them more successful or helped them achieve something.

Make sure to note who the customer is (the type of user or customer) and what role the product plays in their life and how their life has been improved with this new service.

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