How to Start a Product Development Business

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Helping any product become a successful commodity takes many steps. It will take careful strategizing to figure out ways to improve and market an offering. Products acquired for development should be inspiring, because passion for a product and belief in its value is crucial. Surveys and customer feedback must be part of the development process. Enhancement of a product's best features and benefits must be an outcome of the overall process as well. Turning out a saleable product means that you can't be satisfied until the product begins to return a predictable profit.

Start a business to develop products by engaging a team of people who like to work with innovation on many levels. Hire workers who like to analyze details. Don't open this kind of business without passion for excellence and dedication to what will work in the marketplace. Obtain a retail or office space, depending on the types of products to be developed, and get a business license.

Purchase basic office furniture and a computer for each worker. Hire more employees, depending on the types of products to be developed, with expertise in reviewing scientific or technical data as the business grows. Add employees over time who have excellent track records for developing products. Avoid novices, since this type of expertise must be acquired over many years.

Create a plan to assess each step of a product's development, marketing and packaging, plus sales techniques. Spend time evaluating how the product compares to what's already on the market. Keep in mind that the product must be unique in some manner to fit a particular marketing niche. Look at ways to make the product stand out in its design, its ability to be recycled, or its ability to outlast other similar products.

Review how the product will be perceived globally. Look at ways to sell it online or in direct sales presentations in other countries. Ask clients in different regions and different countries to evaluate the product from various perspectives. Invite lots of criticism in the developmental stages, since facing the truth early on will save time overall.

Enlist the help of marketing and advertising specialists to see which features of the product should be emphasized. Brand the product to save time, save money or speed up a computer, for example. Tell the buyer how the product will improve quality of life. Be innovative in figuring out products that will be useful, so that products to be developed can be designed to meet the needs of real people.

Tips

  • Conduct surveys along the way to ask potential customers what they are looking for. Write the surveys in ways that help pinpoint problems that will make the product less useful. Going back to the drawing board can cost many months of work. Anticipate how to create a great product and great packaging by moving slowly to create what consumers envision as ideal.

Warnings

  • Enlist the help of experts in developing good products, especially chemical-laden products, that could cause allergies or reactions in people. Spend money early on for consulting fees, rather than try to correct errors in late stages of development. Many product development processes have caused companies to go bankrupt. Spending too much on correcting errors can destroy any profits for the first several years.

References

Resources

About the Author

Judi Light Hopson is a national columnist for McClatchy Newspapers. She is founder of Hopson Global Education and Training and co-author of the college textbook, Burnout to Balance: EMS Stress. She holds a degree in psychology from East Tennessee State University, and has been a professional writer for 25 years.

Photo Credits

  • business image by peter Hires Images from Fotolia.com