Have you ever had an idea for a brand new technology product? Perhaps you have a keen interest in tech, and have thought about something that impacts you every day that could be solved with a piece of software, an app, or even some hardware? If so, you are in very good company. Every year, thousands of new ideas are patented – the trouble is that only a few actually make it to market.
The reality is that tech is a hard nut to crack. And while an engineering background isn’t 100 per cent necessary, it can certainly help you understand what you are doing right from the off – and what is possible. But what happens if you haven’t got a bachelors in computer science or a PhD in robotics? The good news is, there is still hope – but the bad news is that there are lots of roadblocks in your way.
With this in mind, we thought we would focus on some of your options for building a tech product – of any variety. Let’s get started with some of the problems and solutions right away – read on to find out more!
Hiring a developer
While building a new technology product – either software or hardware – is not impossible when you don’t have any experience or knowledge of the realm, it can be tricky. Part of the reason for this is due to the fact that when you don’t know much, hiring a developer to turn your ideas into a reality is going to be tricky, to say the least. Evaluating their skill sets is the key to success, but when you are inexperienced, it’s nigh on impossible. The solution? Find yourself a mentor. An experienced hand to guide you through the process is probably the best thing you can do right now – especially if you want to get started as soon as possible.
Learn the ropes
The next option that can help is to get yourself back to school – or at the very least, onto a few short courses that are relevant to your product idea. It is a good idea to get some kind of grounding in the technologies that you are exploring, even if you plan to pass on the hard labor of designing and realizing the software or hardware to a third party.
Even if you have a lot of knowledge of the technical aspects of your idea, it can be tricky to translate those skills and learnings into the reality of running a business. There are a lot of operational roadblocks in the way that will prevent you from getting your product out there in the wild, let alone becoming a success. Running a company is tough, and it is also hard to learn from a book. Again, your best option here is to find yourself a mentor – someone with a lot of experience in creating and distributing products similar to yours.
Learn to work with others
Outsourcing work when you are a startup company is part of the landscape unless you experience the unlikely event of an angel investor giving you 100 million bucks just because they like your idea – it’s just not going to happen. The reality is you will need to start developing an eye for spotting partners in all kinds of directions when you are a small company just getting started. But, as we discussed above, this can be tricky when you don’t really have much industry knowledge. Again, read up on the areas you need help with so that you don’t hire a company that will contribute to your failure.
Aim for high quality
Don’t assume that a clever technology idea will catch on just because it is cheap. Satisfying your customers is the name of the game, here, so when it comes to choosing suppliers, make sure it hits the sweet spot between price and quality – value is what you need to look for. There is a huge range of issues to consider when creating a tech product. In the case of hardware, as pointed out over at https://laserlight.com/services/clean-room-processing-packaging/, you may need to work with a partner that has a 100 percent clean environment so that the tiny little microchips and other delicate parts are in the best possible condition. For a software product or an app, the design is a key indicator of success, so you shouldn’t skimp on hiring a good UX team. Good ideas, executed on the cheap, tend to fail – quickly.
Understand your market
Another big issue is that you can create a wonderful product, but if no one is interested in buying it, you will crash and burn. Sure, you might think creating a golf club with a camera attached to the end might help you with your golf swing – but ask yourself, is there a market for it with the mainstream population? You will need to do a heck of a lot of research before you even get to the prototype stage. So, try out your ideas with a focus group. Ask friends and family to spread the word to others and record the general reaction. Put out surveys and ask questions. And also, see if a similar product has ever come to the market before. If it has failed already, is it realistic you will improve the idea’s fortune?
Finally, branding is essential to your company’s success. As discussed over at https://medium.com/madison-ave-collective/, f there isn’t a story to go along with your product, it isn’t going to sell – it’s as simple as that. And when we say ‘story,’ we don’t mean that you have to come up with something similar to those bottled sauce companies that claim to be selling their grandmother’s secret recipes. Sometimes, your story could be as simple as ‘the cheapest ‘x’ on the market, guaranteed.’ Sure, you’ll need a logo and a few corporate values thrown in for good measure at some point in the future. But right from the off, you will need that one-liner that describes exactly what your tech does – and why people should buy it. Good luck!