Usually, startups are guided by their interest and big idea, but this is not enough to create a product in demand. When the founder has developed an idea, it is worth analyzing the markets in which there are growing and declining trends. Here you should not take into account competition as the main factor. The main thing is to evaluate the “forces” that will cover the end consumer’s needs and take a step toward the right segment.
Because of the boom in IT technologies and software products, the development of “iron” startups often remains in the background. However, the hardware startup market is characterized as promising, as evidenced by the number of attracted investments and the demand for IoT hardware solutions. In this segment, startups produce real physical products that integrate with separate software and can connect to the Internet and exchange data. However, you will need these guidelines to create such an “iron” startup.
1. Define the goals and objectives of the startup
Although a lot of time management expert literature has been written about the importance of setting clear and achievable goals, the creators of hardware products often neglect these recommendations. As a result, many projects remain in the development stage for years, never reaching the market entry phase. Understanding the end goal is the key to good prioritization. In the hardware segment, a product can bring the first noticeable profit many months after entering the market, so it is better not to set short-term financial goals but to focus on formulating a long-term benchmark.
Once you have determined your endpoint, keep it in mind and periodically check your steps against the main goal. And do not forget to sometimes return to the assessment of the goal itself and be flexible: over time, the situation on the market and the market itself can change, and you will have new inputs, which will require adaptation.
2. Decide on a country to start a business
It is important to consider various factors: the possibility of obtaining a visa or citizenship, the legal complexity of registering a company, the availability of relief for startups in the tax system, and positions in various business ratings. The most successful countries for launching a startup are the USA, Canada, Great Britain, Germany, Denmark, Finland, and Estonia.
But there is one more country that we would like to highlight. This year, the UAE has become one of the best places in the world to start a business. More than 10000 small and medium businesses are in the country; moreover, by 2031, the UAE plans to grow at least 20 unicorns worth over a billion dollars. Over the past decade, the UAE has become a real point of attraction for many businessmen, vacationers, and specialists from all over the world. They come there to relax, open a business, buy or rent real estate, or rent luxury cars. The latter, by the way, is common since the service for hiring a car is incredibly affordable there. Specialists of such car rentals will help you quickly arrange everything for any rental period. Even the wealthiest people prefer not to buy expensive cars but rent electric cars in Dubai, drive for a day or a month, and then run around the famous Dubai tracks, renting another luxury car. Judging by this lifestyle, we are once again convinced that the most comfortable conditions have been created for growing a business in the UAE.
3. Market analysis and target audience definition
It is important to determine what pain and for which segment of the target audience the product solves. Iron startups cannot develop without being tied to the pain they solve. Therefore, before launching sales, it is necessary to analyze market problems and identify target audiences. The cost of attracting new users and your profit directly depends on the analysis results. It is dangerous to rely only on your thoughts here – it is important to conduct Customer Development and talk with your audience.
4. Avoid defocus on features
It’s better to start by optimizing the main function and then focus on user feedback. The simpler the product, the less time and resources you will need to release the first version. The main problem that device inventors often face is the desire to create a product immediately with a full range of functions. At the initial stage, focus on solving the main pain identified during Customer Development. In the subsequent stages, feedback from users will serve as a guide and allow you to highlight points that need to be improved.
If you are creating a product yourself, try to attract people with different skills from you as early as possible. The developer will need a partner who will think about the business component and vice versa. Keep in mind that software development is an ongoing process that does not end with a release. The first version will contain errors, the code will need to be updated, and you will refine the functionality. If you are looking for an external developer, they should have enough motivation to pay attention to the product for a long time. However, changing the developer during this period will significantly slow down the process.