What Is a Product Mission Statement?
A product’s mission is a clear, concise statement that explains the product’s highest-level purpose. It clarifies who the product serves and what it does for them. It also identifies what makes the product unique and answers the question: What difference do you hope your product will make in the world?
Why Does Your Product Need a Mission Statement?
A product’s mission plays a key role in distilling the why of a product in an easily digestible and sharable way. A well-crafted statement ensures that the big idea behind a product will be understood, but doesn’t limit how to achieve that understanding.
The product mission follows the product vision in the product strategy pyramid and also gives some sense of how to realize the vision.
Remember: it spells out a product’s overall purpose and what a product leader wants to do with the product team. Because it doesn’t specify implementation, a mission can come before in-depth customer research and persona development.
3 Good Reasons to Craft a Clear Mission Statement
A clear, compelling, and widely distributed product mission has the potential to improve your products. Here’s why:
1. It leads to simplicity in design, paving the way for more compelling and memorable products.
2. It clarifies your team’s understanding of who your products serve.
3. It streamlines and simplifies internal processes, leading to better products:
“Developing and communicating the right mission for your product or business also yields another significant benefit. It can speed up and improve your company’s internal processes—making your company quicker, nimbler, and better able to act on great ideas and take advantage of opportunities when they present themselves.”
(Read Could You Explain Your Product’s Mission in Under 10 Words? on the ProductPlan Blog.)
A simple, concise statement could end up being one of the most valuable statements your team ever drafts. Therefore, it leads to streamlined processes, better strategic decisions, greater clarity about who you’re serving and why, and ultimately a more successful product.
10 Tips for Creating an Effective Product Mission
Keep these tips in mind as you create your statement:
- Keep it brief.
- Include the product’s raison d’être.
- Clarify who your product serves and what it does for them.
- Be customer-centric.
- Identify what makes your product unique.
- Leave features out.
- Use the present tense.
- Make it memorable.
- Get feedback from your team.
- Revise and tighten.
Read these inspiring examples of compelling product mission statements.