Success largely depends on who you know. Which is one of the reasons why we’re strong advocates for building a robust personal brand. Because it’s within your network where you’ll most likely trade, share, and validate early-stage ideas. It’s true. The most successful inventors keep an open mind, ask for outside help, and regularly grow their networks. It’s one of the reasons why we founded the Austin Industrial Design Guild back in 2016. Our members include Austin product development consultants and industry leaders from Dell, National Instruments, AMD, Core77, AutoDesk, and Cisco. Through the Guild, we’ve helped continue to establish Austin as a major global hub for industrial design.
Of course, to push this cause and expand our own networks, we attend external events and conferences as well. Events such as the ones hosted by the IDSA (Industrial Designers Society of America). Every year, our team looks forward to their astounding design-focused events.
Industrial Designers Society of America
IDSA events are one of the great ways our Austin product development consultants grow their networks. Throughout the year, the IDSA hosts several events with the goal of sharing knowledge and building relationships. In fact, each event features prominent industry leaders from industrial design and related fields. Our Director of Design, Tim Uys, and Sr. Industrial Designer, Magnus Skold, recently attended the Getting it Made Deep Dive in March.
“The Getting it Made Deep Dive event was a great opportunity to connect with fellow designers and learn from industry experts as they shared their experience of bringing diverse projects to market,” says Tim. “Everything from the 10,000 ft perspective of the development of an Automotive design language to the ins and outs of ‘design in the trenches’ was discussed.” Indeed, it was an incredible event for any inventor interested in the intricacies of the product development cycle – from the concept all the way to the store shelves.
Understanding that the product development process is rarely a straight line, the purpose of the Deep Dive is to help inventors face adversity as they go from sketch to prototype to production. “Part of Mako’s success is our ability to communicate with our clients to clearly explain the challenges and layout strong goals and expectations,” states Magnus. “Covering all the steps from brainstorming to bringing a product to the market via Kickstarter, Getting it Made was an invaluable resource to gaining insight into the nitty-gritty of product development, and also as an affirmation that what we are doing benefits our clients in the long run and ensures a win-win for Mako.”
Our Favorite Presentations
Two of the presentations absolutely stood out to our team. Tim pointed out, “My personal favorite presentations were those of Nichole Rouillac the founder of Level Design regarding the development of the Tempo interactive Exercise machine, and Gavin Rea a designer for Kiwico regarding the design and development of quick turn toy projects for subscription model products.”
Nichole Rouillac’s helped bring to life Tempo Studio, the acclaimed personalized home-fitness guide in a futuristic mirror-like device. In this presentation, Nichole gives some insight into their tried and true design process. Specifically, one of the processes she highlights is refining and testing to learn about what works and what doesn’t. Thus, by leveraging software like Adobe Illustrator and 3D printing technology, they can test even some of the most inconspicuous details like how to store the weights, dumbbells, barbells, and yoga mats. Despite the difficulties, they fondly recalled trying to fit a large TV touch screen, a computer, and the computer vision module and other parts into a simple package.
Gavin Rea, on the other hand, provided a thorough look into the finer details of the design process. Gavin is the Junior Product Designer at KiwiCo. We thought his presentation was especially valuable for newer inventors who may overlook things that they’re not sure how to don’t think is important. Gavin brings up topics such as material selection, potential vendors, development sampling, shipping, and warehouse and retail.
“Both these designers had excellent real-world experiences to share and it made for very educational fun presentations,” shared Tim.
A full recap of Nichole’s, Gavin’s and everyone else’s presentations are available here.
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!