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Product Development Coach's Design Brief Template - The cornerstone for jumpstarting your relationship with a reliable product manufacturer



Okay, so here we are. Ready to "brief" your targets. 


This step is really important to streamline the search, as you are attempting to very clearly articulate your vision for the manufacturer. The more specific you can be, the quicker you will get to sampling and production.


Linked here is a suggested outline. Depending on your product, you may or may not answer each of the questions. Just use this as a guide. Set aside some time to clear your mind and allow yourself to visualize your final product being used by the consumer. This will help you define core attributes including form (how it's made + aesthetic) and function (how it operates). The practice often leads to conceptualizing future iterations, as well. So be sure to capture those separately in preparation for explaining your longer term vision when in the interview process.  


A few thought starters below as you dig into completing the Design Brief:


How would you describe your product?

List all of the word variations and/or categories that could describe this product. Example found in the attached download.


Where would you like to produce your product? 

This is essential in narrowing your search. 

TIP: USA and Europe are known for high quality, high priced product. If your VP is quality driven, keep your search to known high-quality manufacturing locations.

TIP: Read product descriptions of similar products online for sourcing clues.


What are the features / benefits of your product?

The features and benefits of your product serve as major differentiators that will help you zero in on your production location. Having distinguishable features and benefits will also help avoid the commoditization of your product. You want to be a price maker, not a price taker. 


At what price points could you produce your product?

Consider all of the possible variations of your product from sizes to materials used. You will use this list when you begin pricing potential vendors. We encourage you to start simple with one product, but it’s important to maintain momentum with your innovation and product pipeline as product takes months to develop. 


Think about your Supply Chain. What are the various links in the actual construction of your product?

From raw material to final delivery, what are the production steps taken to create and finish the item you would like to produce? This question is essential as it will help determine whether you can keep the entire production process under one roof, or if you need to prepare to manage multiple production teams. 




Please be sure to send us your Brief as it is a critical guide to the manufacturer search. Once we have found the manufacturer, we will reach back out to you to coordinate time for the introductory call. 


What questions do you have? Let me know!


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