1. Is Your Product Idea Start-up Worthy?
As a scientist, engineer, or researcher, you are constantly exposed to thousands of technical problems that can spark your inspiration to develop solutions or products to be commercialized. How does one know whether they have a good research idea that is profitable and should turn into a business? There are many ways to go about it and once you decide to proceed and produce a product, there are other hurdles along the way, such as identifying the right manufacturer for your start-up. Here are some ways to know if you have the right entrepreneurial idea before venturing into your next big project.
2. Perform Customer Discovery Interviews
Conduct due diligence to know if there is enough market demand for the product or service and if you can afford the start-up costs before fully adopting a start-up idea. How should you go about this? Performing customer discovery interviews with potential end customers are the ideal way to validate whether the market wants your idea or product. First, understand your customer’s pain points and figure out what is wrong with current solutions in the market. Find out what are some ways to improve the user experience. Some questions you can ask in your customer discovery interviews are:
What do you think about the prototype?
Is it better than what you are currently using?
Would you buy this product if it was on the market? If so, how much would you pay for it?
When introducing your new idea or product, pay attention to their responses and inquire whether they would buy your solution. Each customer interview you conduct will help you gather more information to flesh out your idea more to make a profitable product. Some start-up accelerators even recommend reaching out to over 100 customers before starting your venture just to make sure your idea is viable for a business.
3. Find a Manufacturing Partner
If you are developing a product, finding the right manufacturing partner can add significant value to your business, so it is important to scope out the right fit for you and your start-up. It is important to ensure you onboard a reliable (and preferably equally enthusiastic) manufacturing partner before you are ready to launch and scale. In fact, manufacturers should also be experts in your industry and should be able to advise you on how to develop winning products that would excel in the market. Some tips to help you find an ideal manufacturer are:
Get a partner who shares a similar vision, passion, and mission.
Ensure the manufacturing partner has technical expertise in producing the product.
Find a manufacturing partner who is reliable and trustworthy.
Use feedback from your customer discovery interviews to incorporate changes to improve your product before introducing the final version to market. Find out more guidelines on how to get research-entrepreneurship-inspired ideas on Train Like a Scientist, Think Like an Entrepreneur (available on Amazon today).