MAKO Design and Invent, Est 1999, is the first company providing world-class end-to-end physical consumer product development tailored to startups, small manufacturers, & home inventors. Kevin is president, and also the host of The Product Startup Podcast.
ProductStartup.com – Check out the Product Startup Podcast!
One Time Offer for Fire Nation – Get a FREE product consultation, a design and engineering review, and get personally mentored by Kevin Mako for any hardware startup that hires MakoDesign!
3 Value Bombs
1) Prioritize energy. Everyday, put in a little bit of effort on the most important things towards getting your product launched, and you’ll get tremendous drive and momentum over the coming months.
2) The number one thing when you think about developing your product is FOCUS! In hardware, it is important because it is difficult at the end of the development cycle to make quick adjustments if you haven’t focused.
3) Crowdfunding is a phenomenal tool for hardware startups. You are putting your finished product prototype out for people to see, and the people who are interested in pre-purchasing your product will help give you money to fund the production run.
**Click the time stamp to jump directly to that point in the episode.
Today’s Audio MASTERCLASS: Create a Successful Product with Your Invention Idea
[1:04] – Kevin shares something about himself that most people don’t know.
- Kevin is actually a licensed private pilot. The process of becoming a pilot requires a great amount of skill and psychological traits that push you to elevate your professionalism, discipline, ability to handle emergencies, and conquer fear.
[3:06] – What are hardware startups?
- These are inventions, gadgets, gizmos, or any other physical objects around us in day-to-day life.
[3:39] – If you’re a hardware startup right now, what is the status of the overall invention industry?
- The invention industry is going through a crazy revolution right now. It could be called as a perfect storm of opportunity for new product startups.
- Over the next 30 years, everything that you see will all be connected. There will be chips in everything.
- The product design tools, software, and prototyping techs are making it easier than ever for product developers to make client inventions real.
- Big companies are spending far less money on research and development but much more money on acquisition of small product companies.
- There’s more support than ever before for product innovation programs.
- Crowdsourcing makes it possible for your invention to get to consumers.
[7:54] – How does a home inventor get a new invention idea to market today?
- The only way is to get it manufactured and get real people to review it and see how much they love the product.
[10:02] – Developing the biggest product in 2021.
- The number one thing when you think about developing your product is FOCUS! In hardware, it is important because it is difficult at the end of the development cycle to make quick adjustments if you haven’t focused.
[17:13] – New consumer products and the steps involved in developing new consumer products.
- Keep an eye out for inconveniences that affect you, and then come up with an invention idea to solve these problems. Then sketch it out.
- Next is the industrial design phase, where visual designs combine with functional logic
- Then, the mechanical and electronic engineering part comes, where the detailed grunt work of building out every little mechanical and/or electronic detail of the industrial design is done
- The prototype then comes alive so you can figure out what you like and you don’t like, and test experimental mechanics to make sure that it actually works.
- Then, develop a final prototype. This is used to sell and market, and you’ll use it to refine any last minute details before going to the final step, which is manufacturing the product for people to buy
[21:33] – What are the best options for those looking to sell a new product to the market today?
- Crowdfunding is a phenomenal tool for hardware startups. You are putting your finished product prototype out there and having people who are interested pre-purchase your product. Then you get to use that money to fund the production run.
- Develop a high quality product first so you can start with raving fans. From there, you can leverage your own success to start talking to wholesalers or distributors.
[25:06] – What are the smartest ways to fund a new product development project?
- When it comes to funding, don’t be discouraged.
- Nobody professionally funds an idea at the idea phase.
- Get into big conversations and prove that the people who have bought your product, love it.
[29:25] – Kevin’s key takeaway and call to action for Fire Nation.
- Prioritize energy. Everyday, put in a little bit of effort towards the most important parts of getting your product launched, and you’ll get tremendous drive and momentum over the coming months.
- ProductStartup.com – Check out the Product Startup Podcast!
- One Time Offer for Fire Nation – Get a FREE product consultation, a design and engineering review, and get personally mentored by Kevin Mako for any hardware startup that hires MakoDesign!
Boom, shake the room Fire Nation. JLD here and welcome to entrepreneurs on fire brought to you by the HubSpot podcast network with great shows like being boss today, we'll be focusing on creating a successful product with your invention idea to drop these value bombs. I have brought Kevin Mako on the mic. Kevin is the President of MAKO Design and Invent established in 1999. And it's the first company providing world-class end to end physical consumer product development, tailored to startups, small manufacturers in home and ventures. He's also the host of the product startup podcast. And today we'll be talking about how he home and a better can get a new invention to market.
What the current status is of the invention industry, the single biggest tip for developing a new product and especially how can you get funding for your product and so much more. When we get back from thanking our sponsors, get your focus back, sleep better and block out the unhealthy effects of blue lights. With BLUblox, blue light blocking glasses. Get 20% off by going to BLUblox.com/fire. Or enter code FIRE20 at checkout that's BLUBLOX.com/fire for 20% off, or just use the code FIRE20. The HubSpot Podcast Network is the audio destination for business professionals who seek the best education and inspiration on how to grow a business.
0 (1m 24s):
Whether you're looking for marketing sales, service, or operational guidance, the HubSpot Podcast Network hosts have your back, listen, learn and grow with the HubSpot Podcast Network at HubSpot.com/podcastnetwork. Kevin say what's up to Fire Nation and share something about yourself that most people don't know
1 (1m 46s):
What's up. Fire Nation. Very excited to be on the show today. Thanks all for the question. You know, the, before the last 12 months I used to be on a flight once or twice a week, going to our various offices, keynotes, all that sort of stuff. But given that I haven't been able to do that for most of the last year. I actually use that extra time to get my private pilot's license. So I, I bring this up because the reason I got into it, wasn't just for flying a plane. But the incredible learning opportunities see the process of becoming a pilot is of course, like a great amount of skills and all that sort of stuff, but it's also a large part like psychological training. It really pushes you to elevate your professionalism, discipline ability to handle emergencies, conquer fear, and, you know, basically to relentlessly, always be prepared with like multiple alternative plans.
1 (2m 34s):
And, you know, I was already quite a disciplined professional, but I can certainly say that it's made me even more advanced as an entrepreneur. Like even a, I'd say a husband and a father. And I always say this to entrepreneurs. We all hear that, you know, lifelong learning is important, but like just really know that whether it's, you know, becoming a pilot or taking a language course or learning something online, or even just taking a shot at, you know, starting a venture, you will always take far more than just the content and you know, to your listeners out there. I mean, you're a part of that right now, listening to this podcast with JLD. I love
0 (3m 7s):
That. And it's so true. I mean, one of my favorites quotes that I use all the time is all the magic Fire Nation happens outside of your comfort zone. So you can't just live in this comfort zone of like things that you already know, just being in the rotten in the same routine, get out of that comfort zone because when you do stretch that brain, when that brain stretches, when you force it to, it never goes back in a good way. So love all this. And we're gonna be talking today about creating a successful product with your invention idea. And Kevin Mako was a person to talk to you for this. So, first off, I want to just ask you to give us an example of what a hardware startup is for those people that might not even be familiar,
1 (3m 47s):
Just basically think of an invention, a gadget, a gizmo stuff that can be sold and you know, Walmart best buy Amazon, et cetera, right? It's the kind of the physical objects around you and your day-to-day
0 (3m 58s):
Life. So we live in a pretty crazy world and a lot of things are going on. You know, I will say one thing that's been pretty interesting is people are still spending like a lot of money. They're buying stuff, you know, Amazon, eBay, you know, home Depot. I mean, you name it like people are spending money. So if you're a hardware startup right now, what do you see as the current status of the overall invention industry? I
1 (4m 21s):
Love it. The hardware industry or the invention industry is going through a, a crazy, crazy revolution right now. I kind of call it the, a perfect storm of opportunity for new product startups. And there's, there's really, it boils down to six things that are happening at the same time, all coming together right now in this, in this crazy storm. So first of all, love it or hate it over the next 20 to 30 years. Everything that you touch and see around you look around your room right now, everything that you see from the, you know, the chair that you're on or the desk of the window you're looking out of, it will all be connected. There will be chips in everything, maybe in a very small way, like saying, Hey, your coach cushion needs, you know, replaced or in a large way, as we're already seeing with many products like the next nest thermostat, right?
1 (5m 6s):
So much happening in terms of the space of innovation and the opportunities that are available, but that's just one of them. But in addition to that, you know, there's other things, first of all, the product design tools, the software, the prototyping techniques, and all of that are making it easier than ever for product developers to make client inventions real right. We've got advanced CAD design tools, simulation software to ensure products are high quality. You've got all these kinds of crazy prototype parts like metals and advanced materials that we can use. So just the development in itself is going through a revolution to make it just that much easier to design a great product, but also test what the outcome of that product is going to be from a physical perspective.
1 (5m 47s):
Three big companies are spending far less money on research and development, but much more money on acquisition of small product companies. Think the nest thermostat think of Oculus rift and all these things even heck there's that sponge, right? That was, that was sold for millions of dollars. That it was literally just a cleaning sponge that the magic sponge, you got it. The other one I've heard, you mentioned it on the show before. So that thing is absolutely unbelievable, right? So that, again, it's an example where companies are looking and saying, let's let the world innovate and then we'll just buy those great innovations as they come out and they get market validated so forth.
1 (6m 28s):
There's more support than ever before. Hardware, incubators, makerspaces, hackathons, coworking spaces, colleges, and university like product innovation programs. The list goes on, right? When I started this business 20 years ago, up until today, there are over a hundred times more entrepreneurship incubation centers around the world than there were back then. I mean, this is just one example of how much support there is than ever before, including things like yo fire. And JLD your book obviously, which is literally laying out a roadmap for how entrepreneurs can succeed. So five, this is a big one, especially when it comes to hardware is additive manufacturing. So manufacturing like 50, a hundred or 200 units at a time locally quickly so that you can test those units in a real market, far cheaper than traditional manufacturing.
1 (7m 15s):
And obviously the big bonus though, is it allows you to iterate and improve before you go into your bigger, more capital intensive production runs for larger volume. Next crowdsourcing St. Kickstarter, Indiegogo, Shopify, Amazon, all the sorts of there are so many tools to get your invention directly to consumers. Now, again, this was 20 years ago. Very, very rare, almost impossible to do. And then, well, before that, even more difficult, right? So these really, if you look at those things about, those are six things that are all coming together at like the perfect storm, all right now in 2021, creating a tremendous amount of opportunity, you know, over the next four years, for those who kind of take it.
0 (7m 51s):
And I can just remember looking at the landscape back in 2016 and being like, okay, I want to bring this journal to market. Like, what's a great way to do this for the freedom journal. And I said, well, what are these new crowdfunding things that are going on here? And, you know, using Kickstarter and getting on that platform and then getting promoted by them. And then just having, you know, the validation that, you know, if people did support this project and it didn't get fully funded that they were gonna get their money back. So there was like literally no risk. They really are going to get the product or they will get their money back. It was like a really cool way to get something out there into the world and get proof of concept and all of those things. So like with that, Kevin, and just with everything else you're talking about, how does today in 2021, a home inventor get a new invention idea to market a really interesting
1 (8m 35s):
Conversation because it's one of those things where if you search around on Google, it's actually very difficult to figure that question. There's almost more disinflation than there is information out there. So, and it's, and it's not just, you know, at any fault or anything like that, it's just that it is evolved very quickly, even so much as to the last couple of, of what's happening so that, you know, the short answer to that is if you've got a product idea and you're trying to make, make it successful. And somewhere there is only one way that that works in 2021. And that is to get to manufacturing. There is no get rich quick scheme, no shortcut, nothing else develop your product, get into to production, manufacture even just a few hundred units and get real people to whip out their credit card, purchase a unit.
1 (9m 27s):
And then most importantly, get reviews from those people of how much you love your product. And, you know, from there, then of course you can talk all kinds of scaling options like licensing, distribution partners, wholesale retail buyers, brand collaborations, whatever else, right. There's lots of options beyond there. But the key thing to really drive home is that all of that happens after manufacturing. The key is as a startup, your goal needs to be okay, how do I go from this? You know, sketch on a napkin or whatever I'm at, you know, this rough home-built prototype. How do I get from there to production? And I know it might sound kind of daunting, but today here with, with JLD, that's what we're going to go through. I'm going to talk to the, at both tech, you know, from a technical perspective, how do you actually do it in the back end?
1 (10m 11s):
How do you build that? But then also, how do you do it financially? How do you actually make that, make that happen?
0 (10m 16s):
And this is why I love bring people who are the masters as specific topics, specific areas of expertise, because then you get to follow the proven path. You get to follow the common path to get to your version of uncommon success here today with Kevin Mako. And so, you know, I like the biggest tips, Kevin. So give us the single biggest tip for developing a new product in 2021. What is that?
1 (10m 42s):
The big one? Well, John, I think you're going to like this one. I've heard you talk about it a few times that you've got an acronym for it, but when it comes to hardware and this obviously applies to software service based firms as well, but when it comes to hardware, the number one thing, when you think about developing your product or even thinking of your features is focus, focus, focus. I mean, this in hardware it's particularly important because it is very difficult at the end of a development cycle to make very quick cheap adjustments. If you haven't focused out of the gate, and I want to give a few examples of this, and one of our clients go fish, underwater, fishing camera, awesome thing.
1 (11m 23s):
You can buy it all over the place. Now they had, they took a market that already existed and they really just narrow down on a very tiny niche focus. How do we get a camera that has a very basic feature set to work underwater that literally attaches to your fishing line so you can see what's happening? That's it, nothing else. They've relentlessly focused on that. And they've obviously become a huge success. And they actually ended up exiting and selling to, to bigger company, you know, to a very simple example is one of our clients called the tri plunger. He literally looked at plungers and said, why are they round? They should be triangle shaped. My toilets are now triangle shaped this guy, great guy.
1 (12m 5s):
Right? Actually, interesting story walks into a big retailer, his first method of trying to sell this thing, Watson with boxes. Can I talk to the manager? Huge box of these plungers says, I've got a way better plunger. You should be selling these things. The manager goes, you know what? I do have a little bit of Liberty on what I buy. I'm going to buy that box off. You we'll see how it goes. And that was the start of the success story crazy. Right. So, you know, and then I, you know, when we're talking niche, I look at our own story with macro design. So 21 years ago, I was trying struggling to get an invention developed classic kind of story that, you know, startup story, I was having my own problem. I said, okay, how can I solve this problem? I very quickly realized it was like nearly impossible for an invention startup out there, like impossible to get your product developed to production.
1 (12m 49s):
So I had this vision, how do I create a world-class full end to end physical product design from those tailored, exclusively to startups and inventors, basically a niche within a niche within a niche, right? And we're in the product design field, but tailored only to mass manufactured, consumer product stuff, going to Walmart and whatnot. And then specifically for startups and everyone I talked to in the industry back then they basically said, oh, that'll never work as a way too tiny of a niche. You know, any firm that's, you know, of either that size of that caliber, let alone both, you know, it's all about the big fortune 500 product clients. And you know, those big revolving contracts, they say everyone avoids and vendors and startups like, unless they really need them to help pay some bills.
1 (13m 30s):
And then of course, you know, you gotta get back to your big corporate clients. And right then I knew I was onto an untapped niche. So, you know, I, I went into hiring very specific, very niche, builder designers, senior folks that have Dell, Boeing bows, Nike, Bosch, Procter, and gamble, Mattel others. You know, I built processes to develop products from sketch to store shelves, foreign vendors. I connected with all sorts of like organizations and stuff that could help startups, you know, with the pieces that they were missing in their journey. And although it was super niche, it worked. I mean, since then we've worked on over a thousand products. We have four offices from coast to coast, millions of units in people's hands, all over the world now, 20 plus awards and so on. But it really, it just goes to show you the sheer power, you know, whether it's hardware, service or software, but the sheer power of niche in, in 2021,
0 (14m 17s):
The sheer power of niche. And I wanted to just double back to something. Kevin said, focus, Fire Nation, follow one course until success. You know, these things are so powerful. In fact, discovering your niche is step two, chapter two of the common path on COVID success for a reason, focus is the word that I use most for a reason. And that's why you need to listen to people like Kevin. And of course, myself, or telling you, these are the things you need to be zeroing in on when you're creating your invention idea. Now we have some awesome things coming up. As soon as we back from thanking our sponsors, the CRM you choose to help you run, grow and scale your business is important.
0 (14m 60s):
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0 (15m 42s):
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1 (17m 10s):
These inventions, right? You're intending to take this physical idea, this gadget, this innovation that you have in the physical world, and then releasing it to the market so that end users can, can buy it. Right. It's so, so that the world essentially can buy that, that physical thing that, that you've created that idea.
0 (17m 27s):
What are those steps involved in developing this new consumer products?
1 (17m 32s):
That's where it gets cool. So I'll go through kind of we'll do it in order from, you know, coming up with the idea to production, right? So because in, in, in physical product development, it's also all a bit uncertain as to what those steps are too. So we're just going to lay it out. But also in order, right? First things first is the opportunity, right? Some people are very fortunate and they've just, they've been walking through their day-to-day lives and they, they see something right. And they just they've come up with it. Right. A lot of the clients that we have come in, they, they really, they just almost somewhat stumbled upon something that they realized was a pain point or whatever else. Right. Some of our clients have been sitting on these ideas for years, right. They've been in their back pocket and they say, oh, one day, I'm going to do something about that invention idea.
1 (18m 15s):
And then you just wait. And then I would say, if you're still kind of searching, you know, if you're interested in the product space and this would be whether it's a hardware thing or, or anything else, software, any business, but the best advice I can give is just, you know, keep an eye out in your day-to-day lives and in your work for inconveniences, that affect you. When that happens, don't just say, oh, that's, that's annoying. Look at it and say, how could I actually solve this problem? Right. So, you know, first things first come up with that invention idea. Once you've got that idea, come out, second step is just sketch it out. Right? That's the easiest thing you can do at home. Do some Google research, sketch it out, just, just the basics, right? You're trying to just bake out that idea a bit on, on paper third.
1 (18m 57s):
This is where it kind of starts to get serious. When you say, okay, look, we're going to do something with us. And this is what's called an industrial design phase. And industrial design basically means visual designs of how the thing actually looks combined with functional logic. How do we actually plan to build an engineer, that thing, and that's done through software called essentially computer aided design or CAD software. This is essentially digital software that allows us due to the 3d renderings. The actual builds. Now this is by far the most important step. This is where you want a number of very senior designers and engineers to really figure out three critical, critical things that form the foundation of, of basically the future of your product.
1 (19m 37s):
This CAD design is the actual same model, which then gets iterated and refined all the way through to production and even into subsequent prototypes. So three things that are key is one, the key features, again, focus, keep it simple, right? Very, very niche focus, second visual or cosmetic look and feel how it integrates with these features. And then third, exactly how these things are going to physically work, which then leads into the next step, which is mechanical engineering. And if you have electronics, you're also doing electronic engineering. That's kind of like the detailed grunt work on building out every little mechanical and or electrical detail of the industrial design that's been done after that. You're under your rough prototypes.
1 (20m 18s):
This is where it comes alive. This is the first time that, that, that thing is a real physical thing. But this prototypes really just starting to be used to muck about with it and make sure it figure out what you like, what you don't like, have some, some conversations around the features, that sort of stuff. And really, if you have any kind of test or experimental mechanics or whatever, making sure that those are work working now that leads into your full and final prototype and what you may do more than one, but, but usually speaking for most mass manufactured inventions, if done well can be done with probably just one final prototype. But this is one where if done correctly should be very close to a production unit. This is both used to sell and market it.
1 (20m 58s):
But also internally, you want to be thinking about using that to refine any last minute details in testing it before you're actually going into the final step, which is manufacturing of that product, getting units made so that people can buy it
0 (21m 12s):
Fire Nation. This kind of step by step process, this kind of flow. This is just exactly what you need. When you want to take your invention, your idea to market like the step by step process. Now I want to talk about best options, not just any options, Kevin, the best options, what, according to you are the best options for those looking to sell a new product to the market today.
1 (21m 38s):
Yeah. That's a great question because when you're coming up with those initial ideas, right, you should be thinking down the pipeline like, okay, how am I going to sell this thing? How do I actually monetize this? Right? And I would say first and foremost, and also most exciting is crowdfunding. This is a phenomenal tool for hardware startups, because basically what you're doing is you're putting your finished product prototype, you know, from the phases of before you have your finished nice prototype, right before you're ready to go production, you're putting that to the world. And then you're having people who are really interested in this, pre-purchase your product. At which point you use that money to fund the production run, which then can occur many months down the road.
1 (22m 21s):
Now, a really important thing to remember here is most of the crowd funding platforms, especially the big ones. They all require you pretty much to be ready for production before you post on their platforms. So that's one thing the other thing to consider is you need to work to sell that product once on that plat, once it's on that platform as well, it's not a set it and forget it methodology. You really have to use that as a tool to leverage up, to get your first few users. Now, the key is you don't have to sell a ton there. You just have to show a few to get real buyers using the product and saying that they love it. You know, another option that, that, that is good as well. But I really think crowdfunding is one of the best, but another option, which is good is Shopify, Amazon, et cetera, right? These are very easy to use tools where of course you have to have units in production, but when you do, it gives you a direct line straight to the consumer.
1 (23m 9s):
It gives you a strong feedback loop in a way of reviews as well. So people love it. You can leverage that. And if there's some issues you can iron out those issues while building your next version of the product. But as always, I recommend building a great product. First very simple, clean, focused product, first very high quality product first so that you start with raving fans. And then from there, you know, if you've done those first two things, well, what's really amazing is you can leverage that success to start talking to those wholesalers or distributors, which in hardware is like really different than any other industry, because you can have tremendous scale. You meet the right buyer and you can go from 500 unit order to a 5,000 unit order on one decision-maker right.
1 (23m 49s):
So the scale when it comes to distribution and wholesale and all that is big, which of course leads to what everyone always is thinking of at the very, very end is, well, how do I then get into retailers? But you have to understand that retailers is like the end game. That's once you've gone through those steps. And you've proven that that's when you can start getting into retail, there's a lot of the time you're doing that through your wholesalers, wholesalers or distributors, but retail to get direct is possible, but you really have had to prove, have to prove your model. And then that's when you get to the big stuff like selling directly to brands or co-branding, or even white labeling it under another brand where you sell it to them. And then they use their brand to sell it onwards and licensing deals and all that sort of big stuff when you actually scale from there.
1 (24m 30s):
But really that order above is kind of key. And it all kind of starts with getting your first few. It doesn't have to be a lot first few units out to market to get those braving
0 (24m 38s):
Fans. Now, that is exciting Fire Nation to think about that end result when you're actually going through those final steps that Kevin's talking about. I mean, that's the dream, but Kevin, let's be honest. Some people's dreams need a couple of dollars and cents to even start to make that reality. So let's end today by talking about funding, what are the smartest ways to fund a new product development project that you've seen in action?
1 (25m 6s):
A big question. And the first thing I want to harp on when it comes to funding is like, don't be discouraged. I would say that more than half of the clients that work with macro D design don't themselves, have the funding to go all the way to manufacturing. That is okay, it's a normal part of hardware, design and development. And, you know, I can kind of break down how you pull that off in a moment, you know, for those of you that have funding, you're in a great position as you're saving all of your equity firm for when things get serious, when you actually get into production and sales, then you can have, you know, you can look to say, okay, I'm going to keep this business going and just use it as a cash center or I'm going to sell it outright, or I'm going to, you know, raise a big funding round to really scale it up. You know, that's great. But for those who don't have the funding, hardware design has some very key milestones that you need to hit to consider different types of funding rounds.
1 (25m 54s):
So I'll go through them in brief first things. First, nobody professionally funds an idea at the idea phase. So first and foremost is the CAD design. You pretty much have to do this yourself. And if you can't financially afford this yourself, then you are relying on friends and family who trust you, not even necessarily idea, although that's the cherry on top, but trust you to actually execute on building this thing and getting it to production, which is always the end goal, right? So first things first, if you're building the design, the CAD design, some of the early engineering, that sort of stuff, absolutely. That is on the startup. And that's a commitment that more serious investors are looking for as you go down the road. The next milestone is your rough prototype that we talked about above.
1 (26m 37s):
That's an interesting time because you actually, at that point, have a little bit of meat on the bones to go to certain types of angel investors or certain types of small, very small micro institutional investors or that sort of thing, and say, okay, look here, I've got I'm in development of this product. I'm on, let's call it, you know, halfway through development of this product. We've got a unit, you know, quasi working here, we've proven the technology. I have some people saying that they would love it, that they would buy it, that sort of thing. And would you be interested in, in, in, in an equity financing round at that point? So that's where you actually have some meat on the bones. You may be able to pull it off on the, after the CAD phase, if it's really well designed really well engineered, but that's fairly unlikely more than likely an investor wants to see the thing in their hands.
1 (27m 22s):
Then you get to the, you know, final prototype and pre-production, that's where things get serious. Because if you can prove that, Hey, look, I've got 500 people buying it on crowdfunding. I've fully engineered the product. We're ready to go into production. I now need money to scale. That's where you start to get into very exciting conversations with potential investors because they don't, that you've essentially alleviated the development risk. Now they're looking at, at as scaling risks, how much do I believe in the product? How much do I believe in you? How big do I think the market's going to be for that? Whatever, that's the conversations that get serious, but where it gets really big is when you're in production, you have real users that have your product and they say, I love to say I'm using it. And it's an amazing product.
1 (28m 3s):
I think of our client, the Moonlight, it's a very simple product. It's a viewfinder that you put on top of your phone. It used the flashlight on your phone to tell true children's stories on the roof, right? She came to us with the idea, developed it through. She did a crowdfunding campaign, sold a bunch of units. People were loving it, raving fans, that sort of thing, spin master toys, buys a moat and sells it in 70 countries overnight. Right. That, so that is the key you want to get into the big conversations, prove that people have bought your product and love it.
0 (28m 31s):
That's the key. I mean, that proof of concept is so key. Like for instance, when we went through Fire Nation and had, you know, over 4,000, like 300 orders of the freedom journal, like that allowed us to have the faith to go ahead and place this massive bulk order with our manufacturer, because we knew that there was absolute demand, absolute proof of concept. So I loved how you walked us through all those options and all the funding that you can potentially be going through. And Hey, sometimes you just got to kind of cozy up to uncle Joe or auntie Samantha and say, Hey, like, you know, like let's, let's, let's talk a little business here because I got this great idea. If you believe in my work ethic, if you believe in this idea, then this could be something really fun and enjoyable and awesome for us down the line for obvious reasons.
0 (29m 14s):
Now, Kevin, you talked about a lot of awesome stuff here today. What is the one takeaway that you want to make sure a Fire Nation gets from everything that we talked about, then please take a second. Tell us how we can find out more about you and everything that you do in this world. Any gift or call to action you have for Fire Nation. And then we'll say goodbye
1 (29m 34s):
Quick kind of aside, everything that we talked about that really helps with, you know, the number one thing that I've seen in all the thousand plus startups that I've worked with is prioritization of energy consistently. And JLD you mentioned it put in the reps right every day, put on a little bit of effort to the most important things of getting your product launch and you will you'll make tremendous strides over the coming months. So in terms of some help with that two quick things, one, I'd love you to check out the product, start a podcast. If you're interested in hardware, it's, industry's leading podcast for the new product startup product startups in the hardware development space, it's just ProductStartup.com.
1 (30m 17s):
But also if you are interested in getting your product developed, JLD, you've, I've been listening to your podcast for years. You have been an inspiration. Your guests have been beyond inspirational in many different ways. So I want to do something for the hardware startups of Fire Nation. So if you go to our website and you're interested in developing your product, go to MakoDesign.com/fire, that's MAKOdesign.com/fire. And I'm going to do three things. One, we normally do a free consultation, but I've got to make sure that's with our senior product strategist too. In addition to that, something we don't do is we're going to actually do design and engineering consult with you, whether it's, you know, visual, mechanical, electrical engineering, or all, depending on your specific type of product, we're going to make sure that we at least give you that direction.
1 (31m 9s):
And then three something I have never offered before. But for any hardware startup that hires macro design develop your product, I will personally mentor you and your startup business right from day one to your first production run as EOFire's provided me with a ton of value over the years. So I'm very excited to basically help the next up and coming EOFire startups, get off the ground and return Fire Nation. This is it. This is the opportunity that you have been waiting for. If you fit those parameters that Kevin's been talking about all day today. So please get out of your comfort zone. Please know that all the magic happens outside of that comfort zone. Check out MakoDesign.com/fire MAKOdesign.com/fire.
1 (31m 50s):
Of course, his podcast has all the good stuff. The product startup podcast, ProductStartup.com. Fire Nation knows that we're the average of the five people we spend the most time with and financial and hanging out with you, Kevin and myself today. So we need to make sure they keep up the heat and how you do that. Fire Nation is a head over to MakoDesign.com/fire Makodesign.com/fire.
0 (32m 12s):
Fill out those forms. Those three things are amazing. That third and final thing being personally mentored by Kevin. He's never offered it before. This is from start all the way through. I want to hear from whoever qualifies for that, because ma'am, that is baller. Kevin, I wanna say thank you brother, for sharing your truth, your knowledge, your value with Fire Nation today, for that we salute you and we'll catch you on the flip side. Thanks John. Take care. Hey, Fire Nation today's value bomb content was brought to you by Kevin and successful entrepreneurs. They accomplish big goals, which is why I created the freedom journal to guide you in accomplishing your number one goal.
0 (32m 54s):
And we're talking a hundred days and we're talking to step-by-step visit the FreedomJournal.com. Use promo code podcast, rate $15 discount as a thank you for listening to my podcast and I'll catch you there. Or I will catch you simply on the flip side, get your focus back, sleep better and block out the unhealthy effects of blue light with BLUblox, blue light blocking glasses. Get 20% off by going to BLUblox.com/fire or enter code FIRE20 at checkout that's BLUBLOX.com/fire for 20% off, or just use the code FIRE20. The HubSpot Podcast Network is the audio destination for business professionals who seek the best education and inspiration on how to grow a business.
0 (33m 36s):
Whether you're looking for marketing sales, service, or operational guidance, the HubSpot Podcast Network hosts have your back, listen, learn and grow with the HubSpot Podcast Network at HubSpot.com/podcastnetwork.
1) The Common Path to Uncommon Success: JLD’s 1st traditionally published book! Over 3000 interviews with the world’s most successful Entrepreneurs compiled into a 17-step roadmap to financial freedom and fulfillment!
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