MVPs are often the beginning for many startups. Here are 5 successful examples showing us that in order to grow big, you first have to start out small.


But what is an MVP? 


The definition of an MVP is “a product with just enough features to satisfy early customers, and to provide feedback for future product development.” The key here is that you have to be able to sell it, or at least go with a proof of concept.


MVP allows a company to understand the market’s needs without having to build an exhaustive product.


With an MVP, you can check if the demand is there. That’s it.


Here are 5 successful startups that started out with an MVP.


1. Facebook


While the original story of how Facebook began doesn’t start out like your normal MVP fairytale, it certainly ended that way.

January 2004 saw the start of what is today known as Facebook, although back then it was called Thefacebook and lacked a number of services that are included today.


© Facebook














Initially, Facebook served as a social network for Harvard students but the ever-increasing popularity of the platform pushed Zuckerberg to extend it to other universities, and, eventually, to the world. 

Facebook’s early days displayed many key elements of a successful MVP, and these, along with a unique idea and a number of smart business moves, have resulted in Facebook becoming the success it is today.


Keys to the MVP Success:

*  Zuckerberg built a basic model of his product that contained only the required functionalities needed to fulfill its goals. Many of these Facebook’s current functionalities weren’t included in the first release.


*  The application was released to a small group of users in order to test and gain feedback.


2. Twitter


What was originally called twttr is the 140-character social network responsible for the invention of the #hashtag.

The original Twitter prototype was designed for internal users at Odeo as a way to send messages to other employees.

This is how one of the first versions of Twitter looked like:















And you know what? There wasn’t anything like hashtags or replies back then.

It wasn’t hard to see the market potential – hence, we witnessed the foundation of Twitter on July 15, 2006.

Keys to MVP Success:

*  Twitter was released to a small group of people for testing and gaining feedback

*  Many of the features Twitter encompasses now weren’t included in the first few releases, allowing the platform to focus on its initial goal



3. Dropbox


From the very beginning, Dropbox followed many of the fundamental techniques used when building an MVP. One of the key principles of building an MVP is to start off small and capture users’ interest early. And Dropbox did just that.

Before even placing a working product into the hands of users, the team created a 30-second video that visually demonstrated their product.


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