By Suhiab Mohammed
Every product was born out of a simple idea in an entrepreneur’s mind. Many successful products we know today were only mere ideas in the beginning. With careful considerations, each got transformed into great products we cannot live without today. Do you want to create a product out of your crazy idea? Here are 5 tips to help you get started:
1. Write it down
Ideas are like little flies. They pop into your head this second and the next second they are out. Make the best out of your ideas by writing them down as they come. Applications like Evernote in your smartphones come in handy for keeping track of your ideas. Alternatively, write down your ideas on paper. Do anything to catch these ideas as they come.
2. Research on it
The only way you can validate your idea and test its feasibility is by conducting thorough research. You need to go beyond mere guesses and be objective about your new business idea. Some questions to consider when conducting this analysis are:
- Does your idea matter in today’s digital age?
- If yes, how can it develop into a viable product?
- How will it work for your market segment?
- Why should your market segment pay a premium for it?
If you’re sure that your idea will fly, now is the time to patent it. This is something many African entrepreneurs are neglecting, but it’s an important step. Patenting an idea saves you time and resources. If you do some research and discover that your idea has already been taken, then you cannot patent it. You can only patent an idea if it has not been taken by anyone, and no one has the right to steal your initiative since you’ve legally protected it. You don’t want to miss this step as it can negatively impact your invention.
Build a minimum viable product
The best way to transform your idea into a product is to turn it into a Minimum Viable Product (MVP). The rationale behind this is to build a prototype – a beta version of your final product, one that has the minimum features required to work for your target market. The idea of building an MVP first is to avoid investing resources into a venture that may not be viable. Do not focus on building a perfect product at this stage.
5. Listen to feedback
After you have built your first MVP, the next step is to get it to a few members of your target audience to test the product. Your main goal here is to know if your intended customers will buy your product or not. This will also give you the advantage of listening to queries, comments, and suggestions for your product. However, be careful not to suspend your vision even when you get negative feedback. Keep tweaking your product till you build the final version that suits the needs of your target audience.
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