To be quite honest, as an inventor, you can spend years trying to come up with that one successful idea but, how exactly do you know that you will profit from it?
When you feel that you have an incredible idea that could lead to a great invention, I always suggest performing market research to better gauge your potential success or failure while also providing insight and answers to concerns or questions that you may have.
First and foremost with any invention or idea, knowing your market is vital to your product’s success. For example, if your invention is relative to the healthcare industry, you should understand the needs of the market, associated trends, target demographic, etc. Although it may seem like common sense, if your target market is healthcare, fishermen and accountants (and others outside of healthcare) will most likely have little to no interest in your idea. Therefore, save yourself some time by knowing your product and its market.
When conducting your market research, if you receive responses or feedback that show about 95% of unfavourable results whether potential consumers do not like the product itself, its concept, or function, I strongly suggest that you return to the drawing board to re-evaluate and reconsider your idea or, perhaps come up with a new idea altogether. Remember when I mentioned the value of knowing you audience? If your results are consistently unfavourable, consider whether your target audience is appropriate. Perhaps your target audience is an entirely different demographic than you originally believed. In any case, evaluate your invention and your approach critically in order to gauge the value of your idea and its reception into the consumer market.
Above everything, do not ignore the signs in front of you. If your market research returns unfavourable results, do not disregard the reality. While many inventors make the mistake of taking market research at a penny’s worth, your markets responses is a direct indicator of your potential success or failure. Do not think that your product will succeed even after negative survey results. If, in fact, you decide to move forward with the invention process by designing and manufacturing your product, you may learn the hard (and expensive) way that consumers are truly not interested. Doing this, is simply a waste of time and money.
With a strong foundation in being realistic about your invention, it also never hurts to conduct an additional market research survey if your initial results were widely negative. Like I mentioned before, consider a variety of factors at play in the survey:
• Did you target the appropriate audience?
• Is your product explained in a way that someone outside of the industry could use and understand it?
• How are the questions worded? Are they clear and concise?
If, after evaluation, your survey brings additional negative results, then it is time to the drawing board.
On a more positive note, however, if your second survey comes back more favourable, you have made a great gain in the industry. If you made sure to ask, “How much would you purchase this product for on the market?” and the responses generally fall in the ballpark of what you originally intended, then it is time to seriously consider taking the next step in getting your product manufactured.