Anything worth doing is worth doing right the first time
Being a tester for the past decade, I can say that testing is not only inevitable , but also important to create and sustain a good reputation with your customer and in the market , as a whole. Once you have come up with an idea , it is crucial to test it WITH THE CUSTOMER. It could be tested in multiple ways, which I will walk you through. In addition, before testing it is imperative to clearly define assumptions , acceptance criteria and get the testing process right. As mentioned in my post 10 reasons why Ideas fail , erroneous testing could lead to catastrophic results.
One of the ways to test your idea is to create a mockup of the product which is hardware or software and then present it to your customers in order to receive their feedback.
Distribute samples of the actual product to different target audience and get their opinion on the same.
Alternatively you can also run simulation models , which gives you a clear direction on design , visual feedback on the product performance. It is also cheaper compared to prototyping and sampling.
Conduct a survey or a poll mentioning the gist of the idea and ask the customer to choose their stance regarding it. In case of multiple ideas, this serves as the best option
5 Social media
Another means of getting direct (via comments) and indirect feedback is via social media by posting your idea with pictures or video or by running advertisements and checking the number of clicks.
6 Market research – learn previous product failures successes
We could also leverage history by researching if there were any similar products in the market, did they succeed or fail? If so , what were the reasons?
7 Events/Meetup – release
Ideally new products need a platform or a forum to be released/launched and events/meetups are perfect for that, as they grow your reach and enable you to introduce your product well.
If personalization’s/customizations are possible , it would be useful to personalize the product and send across samples to the appropriate customer segments and evaluate their reaction towards it.
In cases where funds have to be acquired through venture capitalists, it is suitable to introduce the product to them . Besides, pitching to influencers also has its own benefits because once they are on board , they could help promote it to a wider audience.
10 Expert Opinion
Sometimes, for better assessment and to build confidence , we can present the product to the experts and obtain their analysis on it.
Hope you got a better idea on testing. The above mentioned methods could be for testing multiple versions of the same product or components within the same version of the product or testing at multiple stages of the product development.