Product development from an idea to a prototype
Many people think about and formulating new and creative ideas all the times. Unfortunately, in most cases, the value of those ideas usually worth nothing terms of money.
And so the question is what does it take from an entrepreneur to create money value to his idea, and what is needed to make money out of it?
This article will deal with the processes needed to build money value to an idea and with scattering the fog surrounding them.
A scheme describing the processes detailed in this article can be found in www.b-focous.com
Four main processes are needed to transform an ‘idea’ into ‘idea + value’:
- defensive processes – patent searching, analyzing and patent registration or sample
- developmental processes – prototypes and concepts development in different levels and up to stages defined in advanced
- research processes – market surveys: qualitative and quantitative
- business and marketing processes – business plan and the additional marketing information needed to present the project
The main process – building value to the project – contains the four processes mentioned, when there is a different time schedule to every process in order to make the project successful.
In order to unveil the importance and the place of the different processes in the process of building value to the idea, let’s see in general what they stand for.
Defensive processes – patents search and registration:
The defensive processes are meant primarily to found out what is already registered as a patent, what is not, what is possible to be registered and what is worth registering as a patent in order to make it easy to defend and provide maximum coverage. A good example I like to give entrepreneurs I guide in projects advancement, is the patent on sawing machine, which all of its uniqueness and registration is summed up in the registration of the machine needle (which unlike usual needles has a hole in its bottom/down side rather than in its upper side).
In the process of building value, there are different stages to the patent process. First we have to find out what exists and what’s not; then we need to analyze the patents found and only then to start the development stage. We must not register the patent until the project reaches the stage when it can be registered as one!!! When that time comes’ the registration should be done according to the project’s character and defense needed.
Business and marketing processes – business development:
In this stage, after analyzing the existing patents, we have to build marketing strategy and choose the product’s target audience. Choosing the strategy is a crucial point in the beginning of the process, and must be based upon the patents analysis. Also, the developed strategy will be a guide line to the continuous relevant activity of the project, and all additional processes will based upon her.
Developmental processes – product planning, designing and developing and building a prototype:
The developed processes goal is to develop the product the entrepreneur wants to develop. Those developmental processes will be affected by the patent searches done and their analysis. Also, the character of the development must be based upon the target audience and strategy chosen.
The development process will reveal unknowns which will be applied to the business processes, such as the product’s production cost, the product’s cost to the consumer, expected expenditures, expected income, goals, land marks etc.
Additionally, the development process will reveal new patents and innovations unknown at the time. These innovations must be analyzed from defensive perspective, in order to examine the patent’s character needed to be registered and the amount of defense needed.
Research processes – writing and analyzing market surveys
In this stage, influences and consequences of the defensive and developmental processes will be expressed. Additionally, the strategy chosen will be a guide line to the questionnaires written and to the information that the market surveys are meant to provide.
The research processes are divided into two: qualitative and quantitative surveys. The survey character and scope depends upon the project character, the chosen strategy and the requirements regarding the needed information.
The result of the research processes will provide relevant and necessary information needed to the project’s business and marketing plan.
Business and marketing processes – business accompaniment, business council and business development
The business and marketing processes already begins at the beginning of the value building process, and will outline the character of the processes mentioned. Their influence will be present from the moment of analyzing the patents and the choosing of the business and marketing strategy and up to the point where all the business and marketing information is ready to be presented to the investor or the strategic partner, or alternatively, to the potential client.
As part of building and gathering the business information, it will be possible to evaluate the project worth, income expectation according to the market segment, expenditures forecast until the stage of Return of Investment, goals, land marks etc. this information will be the base to investment recruiting and to scatter the fog surrounding the processes needed to the continuous existence of the project.
To sum it up
Each of the processes mentioned is important by itself, but the value of each separately will leave too many unknowns and will make it difficult to the entrepreneur to advance the project/ additionally, the entrepreneur must consider the fact that every process takes different time to complete and that its integration with the other processes is essential to the advance of the general process – building money value to the idea.
My recommendation to entrepreneurs is that previous to the beginning of any activity, they should get a fair business council, or alternatively to go to development companies from the industry which provides different services to entrepreneurs and which give, in addition to business accompaniment, all four services with inter synchronization and as an integral part of the service they provide.
An example to a scheme describing the processes, their position and their importance in building value to an idea can be seen in www.b-focus.com under the title Processes for entrepreneurs.
** This article is not to be regarded as counseling, guidance or advisement