This weekend at Cake International was so much fun (apart from the fact that there was no edible cake *very straight face*) but I visited as part of my research and development (R & D) for my business and boy, was there a lot to learn! I’m not ready to reveal the entire idea just yet (learning from my mistakes), but speaking directly to my target market gave me a feel for things such as how big the industry is, what risks are involved, what areas I should focus on more and what areas I can develop in future. I have to admit, there were things I hadn’t even thought about until I got to this event. That’s why R & D is so important.
‘So what is R & D?’ Good question. It can involve all of these things:
New product research
This can involve online surveys, phone surveys or face-to-face interviews. Yep, you’re right back in your old market research job!
This involves defining the area of production and design and deciding the resources are needed to do this.
Once you’ve created the first version of your product, you’ll need to users to test it to see how well it works. Your mates will do!
Updating your product will be an on-going process as you strive to improve your business. Assuming that’s what you’ll strive to do.
This relates to monitoring test results to check that it complies with your business quality standards.
R & D begins at the very early stages of your business with market research and SWOT testing. But try not to get too bogged down with all of this stuff before you launch or you’ll never get off the runway; it is a continuous cycle. So set time aside throughout your business journey to research and develop your ideas into a brand your audience will love!
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