I have decided to openly chronicle my journey to make money in product development, specifically with my latest product, a dog toy I call “Fetch Pro”. I have had many ideas over the years that I have felt were inventive or a “good idea” as many people call them…But I am still working out good ways to go from having a good idea and zero dollars, to having “something” and making a profit…As with many things, I’m pretty sure the process is way easier the more money you have to throw at it, but I have also found that there is probably an ideal way to do everything that also costs the least. This of course is the goal of every business, but is especially important to a newbie entrepreneur with little or no budget. I hope that this blog may help someone who knows less about all of this stuff than I do, and also that it may grab the attention of those people who are smarter or have more wisdom so that they might teach me. If nothing else, I guess it will be my work journal….
So that said, on with the specifics!
I am already at the point with my product Fetch Pro where I have a working prototype, so in future posts I will also write about how I went from the “aha moment” to having a product in my hand. I will cover such topics as:
1. “when I think an idea is worth spending effort on”
2. other related products, aka the competition
4. Designing, Blueprints, CAD, engineering
5. freelancers, lawyers, and contracts
6. rapid prototyping (aka 3D printing)
7. product testing
But this is actually where I am in this current story, I have gone through these 7 mentioned steps, and now have a product in hand that I think if mass produced, and marketed well, will be a product that consumers like and in turn will be profitable. So I will be writing in both directions from this point, going into more detail about the 7 previous topics as well as thinking out loud here on the blog about how to move forward.
So, moving forward…. what should I do with a working prototype and next to no budget? My current opinion is that one of the best scenarios I can imagine is if I launched a successful “Kickstarter” campaign. I think Kickstarter is currently the best platform to expose and launch a unique product directly to the consumer, while also having the benefit of potentially raising money beyond just what would come just from pre-sales. That being said, I think that pulling off a successful Kickstarter campaign will require a number of things. Some things I think would help create a successful Kickstarter campaign:
1. Make a good Kickstarter video
2. Make press releases for pet magazines and blogs
3. Make a budget for google Adwords and Facebook promotion
4. Make time to link bomb the internet!
5. Make stickers or signage for local grassroots outreach into new social bubbles
Ugh. That already seems like a lot of work to do in addition to working full time in my day job! But “To have what others don’t have, you must do what others don’t do!” Right?!!?! Ok, so I just need to accept this work, allot the time required, and do it. I will make a physical list and implement proper time management to accomplish these tasks.
Additionally I will be attending a big pet product convention in 9 days called SuperZoo. I have been to this convention twice now, both as an exhibitor and a guest. This year I can only afford to go as a guest, but I hope to achieve some networking as well as get an update on the cutting edge of the pet product world. I will pulling a power work day by flying to Vegas at 6am, networking all day, and flying back at night, to minimize costs and loss of income from taking the day off of my day job. So there we have it Those are my current thoughts and proposed plans!