Having an idea for a business or product is no big deal. Countless people develop new ideas every day. If you’re able to turn the idea into a product within a reasonable time frame, however, that is something special.
The following will examine a few tips and tricks that you can use to help make your idea a reality. Of course, every idea is different, and so the time frame will vary depending on how complex your idea is and whether you need to first create the facility or manufacturing process necessary to create your product or if this technology already exists.
Study The Market And Differentiate
First things first, you need to know what products and services already exist and how your idea is different from them. If you skip this step, you run the risk of presenting a shiny new product to the world, which falls flat.
Study your competition. Read reviews of similar products to see what people feel is missing. And then be able to answer how your product is different. It’s important to note that “better quality” isn’t always a solid differentiating factor; most consumers are willing to stick to the brand they know, so your product needs to be insanely higher quality if you want this to make a difference.
If you can’t explain what differentiates your product from the competition, you’re not ready to leave the idea generation stage. If you can succinctly list what makes your product different, you’re ready to move on.
Get Your Elevator Pitch Polished
Creating a new product and running a business that presents people with that product requires continuous pitching. Get ahead of the curve by nailing down your elevator pitch right out of the gate.
You need to be able to succinctly say who you are, what product you make, who that product helps, how it helps them, and what it helps them do. You should be able to address all these points within one to two sentences. It should take no more time than an elevator ride would take.
Throughout each step in the process, you’re going to be meeting people. Manufacturers, deliverers, salespeople, strangers at the bus stop or in the coffee shop—figure out how to casually explain what you do in an enticing way because from the moment you decide to make your idea a reality, you are in a constant state of networking.
Don’t let your own prejudices prevent you from treating every person you encounter like they’re the favorite niece of your perfect investor or client. You don’t know who they know. You don’t know where they went to school or where they worked before they got to where they are now. People make all sorts of transitions in life you wouldn’t expect.
Manufacturing: Prototypes To Beta Testing
Next up, you need to make your product. Don’t expect your first try to be your only try. Find a manufacturer and ask for a sample to be made. Examine the sample, make all appropriate tweaks to the plans and make another one. Study that piece, find its flaws, and make another, newer, more improved one. Rinse and repeat until you feel like you can’t improve the product anymore.
Then give the product for free to beta testers; these are people who are in your target demographic who try out the product (again, for free) and give you feedback. Address their notes and then do another round of beta testing using some of your beta testers a second time but also getting fresh eyes on the product.
In this second round, include your packaging as well so people can comment on that. If you want to learn how to grow a business, you need to become comfortable with feedback and find ways to put it to good use.
The difference between a success and a failure often rests on whether or not a person was willing to go back and do the 40th to 50th revision.
Once you’ve got a product that you and all your beta testers are raving about, it’s time to find your ideal customers and share the wonder that you’ve created with them. Depending on details about your target demographic, like their age and interests, you might find them online, at trade shows, or at other events. Figure out where they are and get your product in front of them.
The above information should help you take your brilliant idea, polish it up and present it to the world. It might take a lot of energy and persistence, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done.