Platform Business Strategy Canvas

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Platform businesses are among the most successful companies of the past few years (think Uber, Facebook, Airbnb, or Amazon). You might also have heard of this model as a “multi-sided platform” or “marketplace”. This isn't a new business model, but as Internet connections became increasingly present in our lives (first in every home, then in every pocket), the possibilities for global-scale platform businesses exploded.

Not all businesses that set out to build a platform business are set out to succeed in it, though.

The Platform Business Strategy Canvas helps you discover the critical factors in a platform business (a.k.a. marketplace):

  1. the Core Job;

  2. the “Yeah… But…” statements and the subsequent gaps;

  3. the network effects;

  4. ways to overcome the chicken and egg problem; and

  5. platform-specific value, usability, feasibility risks.

and design a way of coordinating and focusing actions to deal with these factors — the foundations for your platform business’s product strategy.

This canvas is for founders, product managers and product leaders in platform businesses. It is particularly useful if:

  • you are in your first foray into platforms; and

  • your company lacks the aforementioned awareness of the specifics of a platform business and of building a product to help that business succeed.

This Miro template board includes step-by-step instructions to use the canvas, so you can use it on your own. You can better understand the underlying concepts if you follow along with the short book The Platform Business Strategy: a Practical Guide for Busy Product Leaders, where this canvas was first presented.

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João Craveiro image
João Craveiro
Product Manager
Working in software for 13+ years across different duties (researching, building, teaching); author of "The Platform Business Strategy: a Practical Guide for Busy Product Leaders". Working with B2B / platform products for 7+ years, I've held product management/leadership roles with global reach and impact at companies such as Onfido, Farfetch and Remote. I've also held teaching positions in universities, and taught product strategy workshops in world-class events like Productized and JAM.

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