Developing a hardware prototype is one of the most valuable stages for hardware startups. Well, for any startup really. And that’s for a couple reasons. #1 – you see your product come to life. #2 – you learn extremely valuable insight about how your product could be used, how it holds up through wear and tear, and how it can be improved. But maybe your hardware startup is still in the early prototype stages. Maybe you’re pressed for cash and you don’t have the time and resources to ship out a final product. So instead of trying to raise investor
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We’ve written about everything from building an MVP to acquiring your first customers, but what we have yet to discuss is preparing your hardware startup for production–perhaps the least fun part about hardware. The complicated part about making a physical product and getting it to ship on time is that it involves too many suppliers and vendors. That’s arguably the worst part about having your product manufactured abroad. Working collaboratively and on your timeline is a lot harder. Of course there’s no right way to preparing your hardware startup for production. There only seems to be a logical sequence of
Hardware startups sometimes overlook getting their product validated Unfortunately, hardware startups are sometimes doomed for failure without the proper validated learning processes put into place. That’s one reason why we’re so passionate about lean hardware. For the most part, the purpose of lean hardware is to maximize learning by gathering feedback from your customers, backers, or investors through a series of processes. The only problem with gathering feedback is not a lot of people really know where to start. Among the hundreds of questions that an average aspiring entrepreneur would have, we’re often asked, “How do we ask hundreds of customers for
Marketing your hardware startup is usually never second nature. Hardware founders and product guys get so carried away by all the fancy technologies and sweet features we desire that they forget to share it with the right audience. On top of that, they’re never really sure where to start. To remedy this, we put together 3 pre-prototype, pre-production, power strategies that you can use today so you can get started on marketing your hardware startup. The beauty about these strategies is that they are independent of each other. Although, some may seem like they go hand in hand, you can
What makes a crowdfunding campaign successful? Is it luck? Strategy? Or some sort of wizardry? In all honesty, it’s a bit of everything, but usually strategy takes the cake. One thing that’s for sure is that getting initial traction is critical to a successful campaign. There’s plenty of ways to get early traction, but, as many of you already know, getting press may possibly be the best path to success. Now, let’s talk about how to do it! Press Can Do Wonders for Your Startup Let’s just dive right in, here’s what press can do for you. 1. Brand reputation
Choosing a manufacturer to produce your hardware product is a lengthy, time consuming, and overwhelming task. But, believe it or not, there are a few things that you can keep in mind in order to make this process a lot easier and faster. In the midst of designing and prototyping, founders are always quick to jump the gun on manufacturing. They immediately assume that they’re going to need the biggest and greatest manufacturer of all without even considering how many people are actually going to purchase their product. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. You should be considering
Underestimating the costs of building a hardware product could mean failure for your entire company. Unfortunately, too many hardware makers underestimate their expenses. Of course, the cost to launch a product varies drastically but in order to launch a successful hardware product, you need to know how much money you’re going to be spending when and where. When it comes down to the most critical and sensitive costs, there’s 3 major expenses that you have to prepare for. Buckle Down for Product Development Most people believe that building the physical product is the most expensive part of a launch. And
Almost all hardware startups are focused on getting more sales, and growing their company. Rather than trying to get more sales and close new clients, try answering this question, “how do I get more customers?” Brand development is often overlooked when it comes to hardware, especially since most founders are product people. So how can someone–who’s primary focus is to make more sales–approach brand development. Well for starters, you need to understand that brand development is not just about how a logo or website looks, or even your company’s slogan. It’s about experience. Well mostly. But here’s the rundown. Better
Building any type of startup is definitely an intimidating venture. And it can be especially frightening for hardware makers. So many hardware founders are fixated on developing the perfect product that they forget about the other risks involved. The truth is, no matter how perfect their product may be, no matter how valuable it is, you can’t eliminate all risk. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t strive to minimize it. Why though? Reducing risk to it’s simplest form usually means that your chances of success are increased. And that’s what you want right? Yes. That’s exactly what you want. So
It makes sense that hardware startups are founded and operated by someone who makes hardware. The problem with that is that they often get so wrapped up in trying to make the perfect product, that they forget to focus on other highly important aspects of a startup. We get it, they’re product people. But they wouldn’t have to bare the headaches, the stress, or the uncertainty of running a hardware company if they knew exactly what they should focus on from the get-go. Yeah, every startup is different. They all have other dependencies, goals, budgets, etc., but we’ve noticed a