Developing products can be a long and expensive business.Here's how the smart people do it ! Start with the end in mind !Look first, in general terms only, at the 'big' picture.You need to give some thought to each of the 4 main issues. Product-Process- Market-Money.Failure to do so - can be your undoing !Product - design with useful feature benefits.Process - that allows manufacture for a reasonable price. Market - a customer that wants to buy it at the approx. price you can sell it atMoney - a source of money to bring the project to conclusion.
This whole process leads up to the Customer. The Customer should be the Start & End of your journey. To the Customer :- - What extra benefits can you offer ? - What better value ? - What better service ? If you can't offer any of the above don't bother starting the journey. Keep putting yourself in your Customer's shoes !
What gets people really focused on the chart above ? If you have a contractor/s make something for you, by the time it gets to the retail Customer it's price has increased by about 3 and sometimes up to 5 times !Why ? Well by the time the Distributor (sometimes there is more than one) puts on their % and the Retailer puts their % on top of that - the product price grows amazingly.This all means pressure on the Manufacturing cost - can you reduce the processing cost - change the design - alter the raw materials ??Alternatively - can you include feature benefits that justify the higher cost?This is why you work around this loop above to get a successful product.Before tooling up for it you can work out the approximate end selling price, and see if it is what the customer is prepared to pay - if not - change the design and revise the cost.If you are an inventor or product developer we can put a vast amount of expertise at your disposal.
This is a summary of the things we can do for YouAdvice and help with the following ...... to commercialise your product.
Assessment of the Product for the client - The concept - How it could be manufactured - can expensive tooling be avoided - Rough costs involved - sizing up available.Marketing information - feature benefits - competition - price - Distribution - possible patent or design protection - is it worth the journey ?
Send client off to Patent Attorney - Patent search want full copies of anything that looks 'close' - as useful background information can flow from this including potential distributors, potential purchasers of IT, the Product. or license. Need an opinion on what appears, at this stage, on the best method of protection.See more detail below.
Prototypes may be from cardboard, plastic, plaster or metal. It may already exist. This has great hands-on value and comes to grips with some 'real-live-world' 3D issues. This can be also be done in 3D software, but the hands-on model is invaluable. See more comments below.
Acquire marketing data - competition - selling prices - distribution cost ?All leading to - approximately what have we got to make it for ?Feature benefits of competitive products. Market size ? Are the feature benefits envisaged worthwhile ? How are you going to distribute it ? Absolute detail is a waste at this stage - is it worth proceeding ? ► Learn More
At this point we can usually always add some more feature benefits. What modifications are required - effect of price ? - the issue of the inventor 'climbing into the real commercial world'. Variations to design.
Work through with client the potential product design detail and possible compromises to the satisfaction of the client. (Procurement of specific components & raw materials can sometimes be a lengthy task).
The process of drawing up product design detail with several views and associated dimensions. Note :- these drawings are always in colour - highly graphic to get the message across to the clients, potential investors - or licensees ! We are in the business of selling concepts !
In prototypes we are looking for refinement of the features, sizing and 3D issues - design styling - the fitting of parts, ease of, in 'the-real-live-world' - tolerances - colour - finish.The aim is to resolve as many of the issues that can't easily be resolved on paper, and get something we can demonstrate, and photograph for brochure and "preselling" purposes. Some 'pictures' can come from 3D software, (varies with the type and nature of the project).
With the information above, photos of prototype, and drawings, we will put together a data sheet, and brochures. Draft specs. and other information. This can serve as a basis and can be further updated as the project proceeds. This can be used as a pre-selling tool. A Product or company logo can be generated if required.This information can then be forwarded to a Patent Attorney for background information.
As plans are now to go out for quotes - From this point forward protection of the concept becomes an issues as the number of people involved increases and supervision becomes difficult. Protection should now be put in place - Patent, Registered Design or otherwise. Confidentiality agreements can also be used.For more detail on this subject click here
What normally happens in the 'real world' is that the quotes for manufacture come back and so often you find the cost is too high, and so variations in the ... Raw Materials - design - Processing Method - Manufacturing source (local -Overseas)These changes are made to get the cost into line with what the marketing data estimated it would effectively sell at - only rough figures at this stage.
We can help you in all the above areas and more.We have a summary list document here