Thanks to the popularity of DIY YouTube videos, step-by-step blogs and digital workshops, there’s plenty of online business help for inventors and startups to take their first step in product development from the comfort of their home. Now more than ever, Canadians are trying to bring their new and innovative ideas to life. Of the 1.23 million employer businesses in Canada, about 98 percent are small businesses! But the big question here is how do you transform your idea into a successful business?
The truth is that the idea is only one, albeit important, part of your business. A good business owner knows they need to consider many other elements along the way. They specifically seek business help for inventors and startups to learn and think beyond the idea.
Bill Gross, the founder of Idealab, compared 200 companies to analyze what key elements accounted for the success or failure of a company. To his surprise (and ours too), the timing ended up being the biggest reason why startups succeed – not the idea, team, business model or even funding. Here are the five key elements in order of importance.
Why it’s the most important:
Is your idea too early and the world is not ready for it? Before you start anything, you should consider if it’s the right time to launch your product. But if you procrastinate and wait too long, you might find that your competitors have beaten you to the market.
Why it’s the second most important:
Getting business help for inventors and startup owners often means asking outside help. In other words, you should be building a team. Because chances are you won’t have the time or energy to address the inevitable accounting, marketing or sales challenges on your own.
Building a skilled team that has chemistry and trust in one another will help your business adapt to and overcome such challenges. At Mako, we’ve built an experienced team of mid-to-senior-level designers who come from companies such as Dell, Nike, Bose and Boeing. Their experience at these Fortune 500 companies is critical to the way we find innovative solutions for our clients.
A great way to build and manage your team is through PEO services. These Professional Employer Organizations provide payroll, benefits and many other HR additional solutions for your business.
Why it’s important:
You need an idea that addresses a problem worth solving and differentiates your business from your competitors.
Why it’s not as important as timing:
It may be tough to hear, but what you might think is a good idea isn’t necessarily profitable – especially if it’s difficult to understand how the product solves a problem. That’s why we’re here to provide business help for inventors and startups. When you lean on the experts at Mako Design, you’ll get the appropriate UX, design and engineering knowledge to turn your idea into a worthwhile product.
4. Business Model
Why it’s important:
You should have a clear outline of measurable objectives and strategies for generating revenue.
Why it’s not as important:
Because you can always add a business model once your product has traction.
Why it’s important:
More often than not, when people think about business help for inventors, they immediately think about money. Especially because every business needs money to increase its valuation, scalability and other expenses.
Why it’s the least important:
It’s not about how much money you have at the start, it’s about how much value your product brings. A startup that’s underfunded but is also prepared and has traction demonstrates that it has potential value – and investors love potential value.
So once you come up with that great idea, you should have already begun researching business help for inventors and startups to determine if your idea is ready for the market. A good place to start is by building a business plan and prototyping to test your product in the real world.
About: MAKO Design + Invent is the original firm providing world-class consumer product development services tailored to startups, small manufacturers, and inventors. Simply put, we are the leading one-stop-shop for developing your physical product from idea to store shelves, all in a high-quality, cost-effective, and timely manner. We operate as one powerhouse 30-person product design team spread across 4 offices to serve you (Austin, Miami, San Francisco, & Toronto). We have full-stack in-house industrial design, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, patent referral, prototyping, and manufacturing services. To assist our startup and inventor clients, in addition to above, we help with business strategy, product strategy, marketing, and sales/distribution for all consumer product categories. Also, our founder Kevin Mako hosts The Product Startup Podcast, the industry's leading hardware podcast. Check it out for tips, interviews, and best practices for hardware startups, inventors, and product developers. Click HERE to learn more about MAKO Design + Invent!