The Mom Test by Rob Fitzpatrick -
October 8, 2019.
Fluff comes in 3 cuddly shapes:
- Generic claims (“I usually”, “I always”, “I never”)
- Future-tense promises (“I would”, “I will”)
- Hypothetical maybes (“I might”, “I could”)
When someone starts talking about what they “always” or “usually” or “never” or “would” do, they are giving you generic and hypothetical fluff. Ask good questions that obey The Mom Test to anchor them back to specifics in the past. Ask when it last happened or for them to talk you through it. Ask how they solved it and what else they tried.
The world’s most deadly fluff is: “I would definitely buy that”. It just sound concrete. As a founder, you desperately want to believe it’s money in the bank. But folks are wildly optimistic about what they would do in the future. They’re always more positive, excited, and willing to pay in the imagined future than they are once that future arrives.
The worst type of fluff-inducing question you can ask is, “Would you ever?” of course they might. Someday. That doesn’t mean they will. Other fluff-inducing questions include:
- “Do you ever…”
- “Would you ever…”
- “What do you usually…”
- “Do you think you…”
- “Might you…”
- “Could you see yourself…”
Written by Bookcademy.
What is the world’s most deadly fluff:
Would you ever…
Could you see yourself…
I would definitely buy that
Do you think you…
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