If you watch tech YouTube channels, you are most likely familiar with Linus Tech Tips (LTT) and the company’s journey to bringing its own screwdriver to the market. It took three years before the product was finally ready for mass production, and a few more months until the LTT screwdriver was finally available for purchase.
Three years is a long time for product development and for going to market, but LTT’s experience was shared openly by Linus and his team. There are some very good insights as to what the company experienced. We will summarize them into some of the things you can do to bring your product to market faster. Let’s take a closer look, shall we?
- Get Your Specifications Locked Early
A key component of bringing your product to market faster is knowing what product you want to build. That means nailing the specifications of the product as early in the process as possible. Yes, there may be changes to how the product is designed once you get into prototyping and testing, but you still need to start with a firm set of specifications for the process to be effective.
In the case of LTT’s screwdriver, Linus changed a lot of the specifications as they went through the product development and prototyping process. These changes – often minute and seemingly insignificant by nature – add significant delays to your go-to-market timeline. With the specifications nailed, you can focus better on changes that are necessary.
- Prioritize Research
Speaking about changes that are necessary, product development needs to be deeply rooted in solving customer problems. You may have an extravagant goal that you want to achieve, but creating a cool product is only a small part of the equation. What should be the focus is creating a product that solves customers’ problems.
Research is your friend if you want to involve the customers early. The sooner you do research as part of product development, the more potential issues you can anticipate early. Doing some reverse engineering on existing products (if any) should also be part of this research. You can save a lot of time by learning from the mistakes of your competitors.
- Make Mistakes Early
Staying with learning from mistakes, you want to make your own mistakes as early as possible. When you make mistakes early, you can figure out ways to fix those mistakes earlier in the process. Rather than finding out that the shape of the product makes mass production difficult when you are already speaking with vendors, for example, you can streamline the design earlier.
This is where rapid prototyping and prototype tooling become your most powerful weapons. You don’t have to go through long delays just to have a working prototype or the tooling needed for mass production. Everything can be 3D-printed, immediately tested, and refined using 3D CAD or design software in a matter of days.
The combination of these steps will help you reduce your time to market by as much as 60%. There are certain steps that you cannot skip or do faster, but for everything else, you can streamline your processes and bring your product ideas to market sooner than before.