Just because you have an idea doesn’t mean you’ll immediately be able to create a useful, sellable product. There’s a whole process that you must undertake if you are ever going to turn your idea into a reality.
If you’re curious about how to get this done, you’re in the right place because we’ll show you a seven step process to turn your idea into a prototype which will eventually become a successful product. Keep reading if you’re ready to learn the truth.
Step #1: Product Idea Research
You may think you have an original idea that nobody in the world could have ever thought of, but you’d be surprised to find out how untrue this statement really is. In fact, somebody may have already figured out the idea for your invention and patented it.
But how do you find out the truth?
Log on to your desktop, laptop, tablet, etc. and begin researching your product on the Internet. Simply use Google or your favorite search engine and search for your ideas. If you come across a product just like the one you wanted to design, somebody obviously beat you to it already. On the other side of the coin, if you don’t come up with anything, your idea has passed the first test.
Next, you should visit the US Patent and Trademark Office website online. If a patent similar to your idea doesn’t exist, then you are obviously in the clear and can pursue this idea further. Now you should perform brief market research to see if anyone is interested in a product like the one you want to design. If they are, then you should seriously consider mass-producing it to sell to the public.
Step #2: Designing a Plan for Your Business
At this stage, you should come up with a business plan. Otherwise you’ll have a tough time launching your product while getting your new company off the ground. There are numerous tutorials online to teach you how to develop a business plan, so we will not share any tips on this topic today. For the best results, visit the US Small Business Administration website to get help with creating a business plan, financing, and other potential roadblocks in your path.
Step #3: Filing the Patent
The current patent system gives the patent holder 20 years to exclusively produce their product before members of the public can create versions of the same idea. So, you obviously want this exclusivity for your own products and ideas, so it’s time to develop a patent and file it with your local patent office.
Step #4: The Prototype Design Process
Now it’s time to design your initial prototype. Without it, you’ll find it nearly impossible to turn your idea into a viable working product that may revolutionize the world.
Remember, the prototype is not going to be your finished design. It does not have to be perfect by any means, and in fact, you’re designing it to come up with a minimal viable product that you can then share with a test audience to ask their opinion about it. After the prototype is given to the test audience, they will make suggestions and recommendations that you can incorporate into further designs.
Some will find it difficult to create a prototype while others will have no problem in this area. Check with inventors clubs to find out if they can help you discover a viable source to create an effective prototype. Or you can use the Internet to find companies that will help you develop and design a prototype based on your patented idea.
Most important of all, when you do choose the company for your prototype, it is absolutely imperative that they sign a nondisclosure and no compete agreement. Otherwise they could attempt to steal your intellectual property and designs and rush your product to market before you. That’s obviously something you’d rather avoid at all costs.
Step #5: Acquiring Feedback
As mentioned briefly in step four, it’s important to get viable feedback from customers and other people interested in your product. You cannot begin rolling out your product during the mass production stage unless others have helped you determine that it’s effective and viable. So you have to get beta testers to help you create the best product possible.
When you get this group together, make sure they help you at each stage of the development process. By gaining their feedback and insight, you’ll know exactly where you need to improve your product and you’ll also learn about the design iterations that people really love.
Step #6: Finding Investors
Launching a product isn’t cheap by any means. And if you plan to mass-produce this product for a large market, you’ll need investors to back you unless you can get a loan from a bank.
So, you can contact traditional lenders and investors, Angel investors, hedge funds, or you can even ask your parents for a loan. On the other hand, crowdfunding is also an excellent option. So consider crowdfunding as a viable funding source for your upcoming launch.
Step #7: The Product Launch
You’ve worked really hard with your team to create a prototype, develop your product in stages, and create a viable, sellable product that people actually want. Now it’s time to launch it into the marketplace.
The best way to get as many eyeballs on your new product as possible is to promote it on social media. So use sites like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to your advantage. Because the buzz generated on social media will lead to sales, and before long you’ll be a successful inventor in your own right.
Now that you’ve learned the seven steps to turning your idea into a viable product, it’s up to you to take action. Your product isn’t going to design itself, so you have to take the bull by the horns and work hard, put forth the effort, and develop a plan to help you reach the levels of success that you truly deserve. So use this information wisely and don’t hesitate to pursue your dreams.