Continuing to look at the flaws presented by the traditional product development cycle for startups, Blanks points out a few additional concerns. For most startups, the concern is placed on a quick, and hopefully successful, launch. This haste can lead to overlook and truly grasping the service and value the product offered brings. There may be a neglect in answering “…What are the problems our product solves? Do customers perceive these problems as important or “must have” (Blank, S. G. 2013)? Most entrepreneurs may think they have answered this question, only to find out months or years later that they do not. As a result, they do not have attainable milestones in place. These pitfalls often lead to rebranding, introducing new services, or even company failure down the road.

Due to the interconnectedness of components within a brand, failure in one place can negatively impact other areas. Improper scaling can cause even additional changes involving volume, customers, number of orders and even order sizing (Blank, S. G. 2013). As such, it is imperative to assess these variables as it relates to one’s venture. What works for owe may not work for another. However, most startups tend to fall into four basic categories:

  • Bringing a new product into an existing market
  • Bringing a new product into a new market.
  • Bringing a new product into an existing market and trying to resignment that market as a low-cost entrant.
  • Bringing a new product into an existing market and trying to resignment that market as a niche entrant.

As pointed out by Blanks, it’s important to know now that the traditional product development model can be beneficial in getting a product out and into a known market. However, considering that most new ventures are seeking to tap into new markets, this approach may not always be beneficial (Blank, S. G. 2013).


Blank, S. G. (2013). The four steps to the epiphany: Successful strategies for products that win. Pasadena, CA: Steve Blank.

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