Mitigating Friction from Product Adoption

by Uday Kumar, Chief Digital Officer

March 18th, 2022

Mitigating Friction from Product Adoption

“If you build it, they will come” … That line may have worked for Kevin Costner’s character in Field of Dreams, but that rarely happens in the real world.

Finding your product’s target audience is one thing. Making them adopt your product is a whole different thing.

There are a number of factors that can introduce “friction” to the “adoption” of your product. Here are some of them –

  • Friction due to Lack Of Knowledge – The most fundamental of reasons that customers don’t buy your product is that they don’t know they need it.
  • Friction due to Behavior Change Requirement – To no one’s surprise getting people to change their behavior can be quite difficult.
  • Friction due to Multiple Decision Makers – Even great ideas can be hindered by the need to bring many disconnected decision makers on board, some of whom may have misaligned incentives.
  • Friction due to High Costs – Costs can be high in a number of ways.
  • Friction due to High Risk – Customers will be reluctant to adopt a new solution if it involves a lot of risk or a high potential cost of failure.
  • Friction due to Unfamiliar Category – Sometimes, products are so innovative that they define a new category that the customer doesn’t really understand or have a budget for.
  • Friction due to Limited Supporting Infrastructure – Sometimes a product can be great on its own, but lacks value without a system to support it.
  • Friction due to Usage Created Pain Points – Customers will not continue to use a product that is overly complex or difficult to use.
  • Friction due to Poor Outcomes Delivered – Many times, a new product sounds really exciting, but it ultimately doesn’t do a better job than the existing solution.
  • Friction due to Lack of a Targeted Offering – Similarly, new offerings need to be targeted to specific jobs and customer types.

You can build a product adoption assessment framework (maybe even OKRs) around the above dimensions and determine where your product is losing adoption due to friction.

#productmanagement #productstrategy #frictionless #customercentricity #productmarketing