Have an idea for a product?
We’ll have you ever found yourself watching late night TV when an infomercial comes on trying to sell you some new gizmo? And you shout aloud ‘That’s my idea, I had the idea to build that?’
Well, many of us have, but we didn’t act on it, we didn’t bring our idea to fruition, through the invention process to the market, someone else did, and that’s why you’re watching their commercial and not one of yours.
Maybe you’ve thought about something you could sell, something everyone would want to buy. Something that isn’t too difficult to build or assemble, if you only had some help. If you could just find someone who could take your idea and build one you could test.
Maybe if you found someone who could build one you could go around showing potential buyers and that would eventually help you get lots of orders which you could use to have a bunch of them built.
If only you knew someone who could help you take your idea and turn it into something you could hold in your hands and show the world.
Well, have you ever heard about prototyping?
It’s where a company takes your idea and does just that, they build a test model of your idea. They build something you can hold in your hand that works exactly like you want it to. You could test it, and discover if your idea could do everything you think it should. You could discover if you like the color you’ve chosen, or if it’s too big, too small, or just plain stinks.
Well, believe it or not there are companies who build prototypes of products for people just like you.
When you have an idea that you want to bring to life to manufacture and sell there is a process you must learn, because turning ideas into a product isn’t magic it takes some work. And it’s important that you understand what it takes to make your dreams come true.
There are 4 phases to the invention process;
- Design Phase
- Protection Phase
- Manufacture Phase
- Selling Phase
Now the invention process starts with a design. If you’re a designer this is basic for you, but if not it’s the important first step to getting your idea into the real world.
To start you’re going to want your idea in the hands of a company that can take the idea you’ve envisioned and combine it with some design expertise.
Someone who can build digital models and if necessary simulate real life to theoretically test the function of your product in the digital world.
Maybe you didn’t know this but you do not need to have a physical product before you file for patent protection.
All you need is a simple design to apply. After the design phase you will have prints, models and maybe even simulations of your product which is more than enough for you to prove that you are the originator of the idea and warrant a patent proving ownership of the idea/design.
So you are going to want a company that knows the painstaking process front and back to file for a patent.
As an engineer or technician you may feel you’re an expert at this phase of the process, but keep in mind that there are many complexities to this phase.
During this phase you are going to seek out business partners who can help you build your product and scale it to market demand.
They must be able to help you navigate the complex process of sourcing across multiple industries and markets to acquire your raw materials to build a product that meets your highest quality expectations.
And if you choose to take advantage of international currencies they must also understand the complex world of transnational business.
Here you’re going to need more than that smooth talking sales professional to work with you and your product.
You will need to have someone who can help you get your product in front of buyers and ultimately in as many stores as possible.
You need a company who has a whole range of sales and distribution partners and can offer high level strategic business advice that you can leverage to scale your product throughout a market and into the global space.
Where You Fit In
reading this isIn short, you need a company that can offer an end-to-end solution and a company that deeply understands the product development phases of the invention process.
You need a company that excels at the design, engineering, prototyping, patenting, manufacturing and distribution process.
We know that everyone reading this works in the design, automation programming, or robotics career field and are creators. They are builders, they are idea people, and they are professionals with the skills to innovate.
You may come up with the idea and maybe even be able to contribute to some part of the invention process but you also know it generally takes a whole team to actualize a marketable product.
And as a professional you should know what you’re good at and what you’re not, and that you should let the pros who design, prototype, patent, manufacture and distribute do their job to bring your idea to life.
The Take Away
A final note would be, that we wrote this article to spark the idea almost everyone has, that brilliant idea we all have that could make us a million-dollars. That gizmo, whiz-bang that if someone helped us build could change a small part of the world.
You need to take that idea and do something with it, do it part time, on the side while you’re doing your day job. Hand it off to a team of pros and let the market see it and decide if it’s worth a million-dollars or not.
Some Prototype Companies;