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Assessing need / market validation for new physical product

Aaron_FF

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Nov 8, 2018
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Hi everyone,

I have an idea for a physical product and am in the process of assessing need/doing market validation. Many versions of this product exist already and the TAM is about 50-100 million people, however there is a problem customers have (and that I had myself) that none of the existing options solve.

My idea (if executed correctly) would solve this problem and also be an improvement over existing alternatives. Currently I'm trying to gauge how common this problem is to determine whether the idea is worth taking further. So far I have:
  • Asked ~5 people I know in person about this idea, they all think it's good
  • Found ~30 instances online of people complaining about the problem my product would solve (and several asking for the specific solution I would provide)
  • Found ~15 instances online of people complaining about a problem that looks like (but is not for certain) the problem my product would solve
  • Went to the store where existing products are sold and spoke with 2 employees about this problem, but this didn't yield much useful information. I'm planning to do this again.
So I have three questions:

1) Is 30-50 instances of people complaining about a problem online out of a TAM of 50-100 million a relevant number or is it way too few?

2) I'm thinking of creating a sales page with a mockup image of the product and directing paid traffic to it - people could click to order but it would say "Sold Out" or "Coming Soon". Does anyone have thoughts on the utility or effectiveness of this strategy?

3) Any further advice or recommendations for assessing demand / need?

Thanks!
 

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amp0193

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1) Is 30-50 instances of people complaining about a problem online out of a TAM of 50-100 million a relevant number or is it way too few?
Sounds like plenty. What does your gut say about how impactful this change will be? Enough of a change that people will be ripping out their wallets?

I'm thinking of creating a sales page with a mockup image of the product and directing paid traffic to it - people could click to order but it would say "Sold Out" or "Coming Soon". Does anyone have thoughts on the utility or effectiveness of this strategy?
Sure, it’d give you a good idea. A better use of your time may be just developing a prototype and giving it a go. You seem to have a decent amount of validation.
 
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Aaron_FF

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Nov 8, 2018
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Sounds like plenty. What does your gut say about how impactful this change will be? Enough of a change that people will be ripping out their wallets?
My product is an accessory to an existing product (that is not going away anytime soon). I imagine that people who already own this accessory wouldn't necessarily buy my improved version (although they might) but people who were buying for the first time certainly would.

Sure, it’d give you a good idea. A better use of your time may be just developing a prototype and giving it a go. You seem to have a decent amount of validation.
I'd thought about this too, my only hesitation is that developing and iterating a prototype could be quite expensive and I don't have that much capital at my disposal. However, if you think this is a good amount of validation, that's good to know. Thanks for the reply!
 

biophase

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  • Went to the store where existing products are sold and spoke with 2 employees about this problem, but this didn't yield much useful information. I'm planning to do this again.
Did you buy these products to test them out?
 

Seth Goodluck

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My product is an accessory to an existing product (that is not going away anytime soon)
Generally speaking, you probably don't need to be too afraid to share specifics on this forum. Mostly good people so far it seems.

Plus, if posting your idea on a forum means anyone can steal it from under you with ease, may want to consider how to raise the barrier to entry ;)

That being said, the other thing I'd say is that you should trust your gut on this one. If you think it's worth a go, give it a go. Worst case, nada. Best case, millions of value vouchers.

As for prototyping (engineer here), prototyping can typically be done a lot more cheaply than you might think. There are engineering firms that specialize in prototyping (if your idea is pretty technical).

If it isn't super technical, you may be able to do as @amp0193 recommends and make a prototype yourself and refine it.

The mock sales page is a decent idea, but you may run into the issue of people wanting it and you not having it on hand. Digital renderings of said prototype can be nice, but might take almost as long as a real prototype to get right.

Keep Going.
 

Jeff Noel

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Generally speaking, you probably don't need to be too afraid to share specifics on this forum. Mostly good people so far it seems.

Plus, if posting your idea on a forum means anyone can steal it from under you with ease, may want to consider how to raise the barrier to entry ;)

That being said, the other thing I'd say is that you should trust your gut on this one. If you think it's worth a go, give it a go. Worst case, nada. Best case, millions of value vouchers.

As for prototyping (engineer here), prototyping can typically be done a lot more cheaply than you might think. There are engineering firms that specialize in prototyping (if your idea is pretty technical).

If it isn't super technical, you may be able to do as @amp0193 recommends and make a prototype yourself and refine it.

The mock sales page is a decent idea, but you may run into the issue of people wanting it and you not having it on hand. Digital renderings of said prototype can be nice, but might take almost as long as a real prototype to get right.

Keep Going.
The public part of this forum is indexed by Google.

I'm thinking of creating a sales page with a mockup image of the product and directing paid traffic to it - people could click to order but it would say "Sold Out" or "Coming Soon". Does anyone have thoughts on the utility or effectiveness of this strategy?
That would be the perfect moment to change that CTA to something like "Notify me when back in stock" and build a hot leads mailing list.

You will not only get Google Analytics stats, but also build a mailing list with a potentially high rate of conversion!
 

Calvert79

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Nov 15, 2018
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Hi everyone,

I have an idea for a physical product and am in the process of assessing need/doing market validation. Many versions of this product exist already and the TAM is about 50-100 million people, however there is a problem customers have (and that I had myself) that none of the existing options solve.

My idea (if executed correctly) would solve this problem and also be an improvement over existing alternatives. Currently I'm trying to gauge how common this problem is to determine whether the idea is worth taking further. So far I have:
  • Asked ~5 people I know in person about this idea, they all think it's good
  • Found ~30 instances online of people complaining about the problem my product would solve (and several asking for the specific solution I would provide)
  • Found ~15 instances online of people complaining about a problem that looks like (but is not for certain) the problem my product would solve
  • Went to the store where existing products are sold and spoke with 2 employees about this problem, but this didn't yield much useful information. I'm planning to do this again.
So I have three questions:

1) Is 30-50 instances of people complaining about a problem online out of a TAM of 50-100 million a relevant number or is it way too few?

2) I'm thinking of creating a sales page with a mockup image of the product and directing paid traffic to it - people could click to order but it would say "Sold Out" or "Coming Soon". Does anyone have thoughts on the utility or effectiveness of this strategy?

3) Any further advice or recommendations for assessing demand / need?

Thanks!
I could have written this post myself! Exactly the same question.

I wasn't sure whether to go ahead amd pay someone on fiverr to make an illustration and use it on a homepage or go ahead and pay $$$ for a prototype.

Hard to know which is the best option when you're strapped for cash!

My product is a sex toy accessory!!
 

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