What is the next step if you have an idea for the new product?

Aspiring entrepreneur, engineer… You run your brain in a thousand circles trying to envision how many different ways you can enhance your environment.

You have developed a new idea for a product that many people will find valuable. It might be worthwhile to develop the product and launch it on the market, but where do you even begin?

If you want to turn your idea into a physical product, I recommend this article.

It will provide extensive instruction on presenting your product idea to a design agency — an activity that serves as a springboard for the design phase of your project.

This article will go over everything you need to know to make sure your ideas are presented to a design firm.

It would be fine to use a PowerPoint presentation or any other document that includes relevant content like a report sample.

You may access the sample presentation some businesses are providing online.

Your presentation must include the following four components:

  1. the problem,
  2. the solution,
  3. the aesthetics & price point, and
  4. the competitor overview.

In the next section, you’ll find advice on some of the most common questions asked by many clients.

This article serves as a guide to help you to prepare a presentation and begin the product design process.
Through this presentation, you will have the opportunity to not only communicate your idea but also

  • determine the parameters for developing your product within the current technological limits, your budget, and your timeline.
  • receive an estimate on your product’s design that is reasonably accurate;
  • reduce the number of design revisions to achieve a more cost-effective and efficient result;
  • get a higher-quality design.

If you are considering approaching a design company with your idea, then continue reading.

Design company or injection molding company perspective into product development is based on the experience they have from working with companies, engineers, and entrepreneurs for over many years, so this insight is for anyone stepping into the world of product development. 

The Four Components of Effective Presentations

plastic design

1. Insights into the market and the problem being addressed

When presenting your product idea, it would be wise to identify a problem within a specific market you are hoping to solve.

Many design companies or injection molding companies serve a wide range of clients in a variety of industries.

Some of the entrepreneurs are first-time business owners who have never previously created or sold a product. In contrast, others are multinational firms that have created and sold many different products.

The sole purpose for many clients to develop their products is to assist people in improving their lives — it is their way of offering a solution for a problem these people encountered in their lives.

Solution-finding can be achieved by brainstorming new ways of solving a problem or studying existing products and finding ways to enhance them. In such a situation, you may examine the characteristics of a product you use at home or work, such as its ease of use, its loudness, its weight, its ergonomics, and so on.

However, to establish that there is a market challenge, innovators must first have gained some insight into the market itself. You can get first-hand experience by talking to people in the field or industry, or you can read product descriptions and reviews for that product.

It is now time to present the insight gained by studying the market.

Please enumerate the main problems in your document and the market insight that lead you to understand these problems.

You should include one primary problem and at least one secondary problem. You might want to prepare a list similar to the following.

For example, imagine you’re a tech-savvy parent who works eight hours a day, five days a week.

Every day at 2:40 p.m., your son comes from school and goes home.

He does have a key to gain access to the house, but he lost it one day while you were at work, so he called you to tell you he could not get inside.

To let him in, you left work, drove 20 minutes, then opened the door for him, and went back to work.

You thought about installing a keyless door lock, so you wouldn’t have to worry about losing your keys or not giving someone access remotely.

You searched online for an efficient, easy-to-use smart door lock that was not too expensive. As a result, you began to consider developing an affordable IoT door lock. You might not have come up with the idea of creating a smart, low-cost latch if you were never left at work to open the door for your son.

This insight will help you dig a little deeper into understanding how your product idea is likely to perform in the market.

Tips: Use a business model canvas to gain greater insight into your market.

Creating a business model canvas can assist you in becoming more familiar with your market. It is a simplified version of a business plan.

A business plan may take a long time to write and maintain, but a business model canvas is much shorter, and it can be easily updated if the business needs change or the direction changes.

If your company exists already, then you most likely have a business plan. If you are beginning a new business, you may wish to begin preparing a business plan.

If you are planning on selling your product in the future, we highly recommend preparing a business model canvas or business plan before approaching a design company with the idea.

These documents can contribute to achieving a better overall product since they involve research that will assist you in determining the problem you would like to solve.

Perhaps most significantly, they will assist you in coming up with a better product solution and understand the features you should include and the retail price point you should aim for—all information that will be explored further in the report.

Features and benefits of the solution

After establishing the problem, describe your solution and the features it should incorporate. Some of our clients present us with sketches of their intended product.

They already have a general idea of what they would like — aesthetics, functionality, and features — they need someone to develop a suitable solution.

However, your presentation doesn’t necessarily have to include a solution. Occasionally, when clients struggle to solve a particular problem but are unsure how they might turn to a company like Topworks for assistance.

When describing your solution to a problem, always bear the following in mind:

Include sufficient imagery and/or a detailed description of your product. Pictures help to explain products better than words.

For example, it would be good to have a picture of a snap-on feature attached to your product — you could mention specifics on what you are looking for here.

Describe the final appearance, feel, and functionality of the product.

If you do not have a specific solution in mind, provide an outline of the features you are looking for by bringing similar examples to your competitors.

We recommend that you prioritize your features based on importance to simplify the development process.

If you’re working on this project for the first time, you may not have yet identified the most important features that end users might be looking for, so having too many features right off the bat could be costly in the long run.

Therefore, you ought to select only a few topics to focus on.

If the main selling point of your product is hands-free operation, then that would be your priority feature — the rest would be secondary.

Be sure to mention both the functionality and the appearance of the product.

It will be easier for industrial designers to develop visually relevant concepts for your product if they are familiar with the style you are trying to achieve.

If you envision a vintage design for your product, we will not manufacture it in a futuristic manner.

Tips: Develop an MVP.

If you do not yet know which features will end up in your final product, creating an MVP is a good idea.

The MVP allows you to collect feedback from potential users and validate the main functionality of your design before you produce a prototype.

An MVP (minimal viable product) is a straightforward version of a prototype that is more cost-effective to produce than a full-featured prototype.

By creating one, you will determine which features matter most to your users to allocate resources only to the features that are relevant to them.

Aesthetics, pricing, and a brief description

This section of the document is where you can describe how your product will feature an aesthetic and how much it will retail for after it has been manufactured.

Also, include a brief product summary with a list of bullet points that summarizes the features you are looking for and any pricing brackets or tiers you might be offering if you have multiple products available.

The purpose of the summary is to provide the design firm with an overview that can be readily referred to in the summary form.

The price point is crucial because it helps us decide what features to include and in what order.

Tip: Design costs, manufacturing costs, and retail prices are all separate items. Don’t mix up what will be charged for design and prototyping with the wholesale price for the product.

Design for manufacturing is common practice for us. Topworks design and manufacture all the time, so it’s common for us to design with a specific manufacturing price point in mind.

The target retail price point allows design businesses to use more daring or conservative features depending on the market.

For instance, a plastic product that contains very sharp corners will cost more to manufacture than one with rounded edges.

This is primarily since the tooling used will now need to go through a special procedure called EDM, or electrical discharge manufacturing, which can be almost twice as expensive as regular tooling.

To determine whether or not sharp corners are needed during the design phase, we can investigate the demands and price points of the product.

Competitive environment

Information about our competitors is necessary to know what products we should be improving on so that we do not have to reinvent the wheel.

By using reverse engineering, we can take advantage of competitive products to reduce costs and time associated with R&D.

We can also go to their website and look at product reviews to see if there is anything that customers are not satisfied with and that we might be able to address.

We would like to see product details on three to five competitors. A simple table consisting of rows and columns displaying this information is helpful.

Do’s and don’ts

injection molding

Here are a couple of tips and suggestions based on our clients’ most frequently asked questions.

Do’s

When creating your presentation, select a publishing software that you are comfortable using. Various formats have been used to present their ideas. A good presentation has the following sections but not necessarily in the same order.

Overall, the choice of the communication medium does not matter as long as you give the information that your design company needs to know to be effective.

We find Slides to be an excellent alternative to Powerpoint, but you can use any presentation software. Include as much visual material as you can.

The more visuals you have, the more effective your campaign will be — but not exclusively. Visual support for your idea is useful, so please include pictures of competitive products and the main parts or features you intend to improve.

Include photos of competing products if available. Don’t include too much text.

If necessary, you can include details and explanations in the endnotes section of the presentation, but do not overdo it with text.

To elaborate further on your presentation, you should be able to speak to the company. Discuss your proposal and your presentation in a meeting.

When discussing your product and its presentation, do not be afraid to meet in person, have a phone conversation, or use a video-conferencing application.

You should not use email or any other messaging system to discuss your presentation only.

In most cases, if someone is local, you could have a meeting with a sample product they have developed or a competitor’s product.

However, if design businesses are located outside of your area, in which case you will take the meeting via video chat or telephone.

However, the design company must have prior information at hand in the form of a presentation similar to what has been described in this article. That way, they are aware of what the client is referring to.

Additionally, it’s beneficial to the project managers to have something to review before writing an SOW or statement of work, in which they determine the project’s direction.

Don’ts

We have witnessed excellent presentations of product ideas that resulted in efficient and effective designs.

Design businesses have also encountered clients who came up with what they thought was a cool idea but did not consider the details before discussing it.

Those who fall into the latter category have an increased likelihood of becoming frustrated and leaving without receiving a quote — simply because they did not have enough information from which to work.

So, let’s make the most of the time together and the experience by avoiding the following:

  • Ask for a quote only after you have provided enough details.
  • Design company or injection molding company cannot provide a cost estimate without getting a basic understanding of what you want to be designed.
  • Unless you have any supplementary visuals with you, do not present your idea over the phone.

People have tried to explain their idea over the phone without providing any tangible information or visual support.

This is not a good idea.

To begin to work on your project, a design company or injection molding company will require some information. Please send some visuals so that it may set up a meeting.

Don’t pick a design or aesthetic direction that is too broad for the product idea or company.

It does not give enough guidelines for creating an effective design that can resolve a problem if design companies or injection molding companies are told to “just present some designs.”

If they present you with so many ideas and you do not choose one, it would be a waste of time and money. The idea you are going to present must follow some constraints.

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