In light of recent innovations in the design department, here are 7 simple steps to creating a product everyone will love. First, get inspired by your target audience and choose a problem they might be struggling with.
Next, sketch out your idea on paper or digitally so you can better visualize what it's going to look like. Then, think about how you're going to make the product – this is where prototyping comes in handy! We'll explore these steps and more in the article!
1. Developing The Product
There are several ways to find inspiration and develop a product idea. Getting inspired should be easy – just look around you. Maybe you see somebody on the train struggling with their morning coffee, or overhearing a conversation about not having enough storage space in your apartment is another great way to get some inspiration!
When developing the idea, keep in mind using innovative product development as innovation drives success in the world of emerging technologies. You'll want to make a product that people want to purchase and use, so make sure you ask yourself if the idea is going to be useful or of value? If you can't answer with a resounding “yes,” then go back to the drawing board.
2. Sketching Your Idea
Once you've decided on an idea that's worth exploring, start sketching. You can sketch out various ways the product could look using pen and paper, or if you're feeling confident in your design, go ahead and make a digital prototype using software like Adobe Illustrator or AutoCAD. Sketching your idea should be fun and easy, so don't get discouraged if you're not a professional artist.
Sketches can also help you to determine quickly if your idea is as great as it seems and allow you to discover any problems or concerns early on in the product development process. Oftentimes, little changes made at this stage will be much easier than changes at a later stage.
So if you're not quite sure about the design, just give yourself enough time to explore different options and come up with something you can be confident in before bringing it into an auto cad software or the physical world!
3. Customer-Centric Prototypes
Next, it is time to create a prototype for your product. There are hundreds of software packages out there that can help you do this and most allow for easy prototyping and simulation of the look and feel of the product. Once you've completed a functional prototype, we recommend taking some photos or videos of your product in action. This will allow you to test the look and feel of your product in a way that doesn't require you to complete all of the functional aspects. Prototypes need to be tested with consumers.
Why? Because what you think is an awesome design may be a complete flop! The best way to test your product is in the hands of real consumers, who know what they want and need. The product needs to adhere to customer desires and you should listen to their feedback.
4. Understanding Your Budget
If this is the first time you've ever had to create a product, you may not know what your budget should be. Luckily, several factors can help you determine how much money you might need for this step in the innovation process.
Once again, it's time to take an honest look at your idea and think about all of the parts that will go into making your product a reality. Budgeting needs to be realistic and while it may be hard to go low, going too high might prevent you from making your product a reality.
5. Assessing Your Resources
In addition to looking at the big picture for your product, assess what resources you have access to that could help you get this idea off the ground. For example, if you're working to create a product with functionality that is similar to another company's tool, then perhaps they will agree to let you borrow some of their tools or offer advice and guidance on how to put together and sell your tool!
Remember: there are very few problems in life that don't have at least two solutions so take your time assessing each aspect of creating a new product and brainstorm every possible solution before moving forward.
6. Making a Business Plan
If you're looking to go big, then you'll need a business plan! Writing out your pitch and how you plan to market your product will help determine if this is something that has the potential to make money or not. From here, it's time to research the market interest in what you are creating. If customers are willing or interested in buying your product, congratulations!
But don't assume they'll automatically invest – chances are there are lots of people with nice ideas who never got past this stage. If there isn't enough interest from key customers out there, then maybe it's time to go back to the drawing board or think of something else entirely.
7. Communicating Your Vision and Finalizing Your Design
Whether you are looking to innovate for your own company or create an idea for a client, it will be important to explain the vision behind your product. This is where research and surveys can come in handy!
Communicating all of the information that goes into creating customer value is essential if you want your client to be happy with their product. If there ends up being something they're unsure about their final decision might change so it's best if you're transparent about what features will add value and why.
It's common for someone who has created a new tool, toy, etc., to get caught up in perfecting every last detail before moving on with the production or manufacturing of the product. While this may seem like a good idea, it's important to remember that moving forward with a final design for your innovation will ultimately help you create a better product.
By no means is this the last step before taking a product to market but getting everything finalized will certainly help make the road ahead much easier.
The design department is where ideas become reality. Whether you're trying to create a product for your own company or as part of a client's contract, the 7 simple steps above will be useful tools in creating something customers love and want to use!