Protolution: A crowd sourced way to test your products

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Protolution, a Mumbai based start up is focused on entrepreneurs. They aim to be a crowd sourced social way of testing product prototypes and were recently featured on Beta List http://betalist.com/startups/protolution.

Protolution allows businesses to test their prototypes with a community of early adopters. Protolution aims to help entrepreneurs and established businesses make the right data driven decisions in the simplest manner possible.

Techaloo got an opportunity to have a chit chat with Mr. Prateek Mathur, Co-Founder @ Protolution. Let see what  he wants to share with us.

Techaloo: What was your motivation for entrepreneurship?
Prateek: I come from a family of entrepreneurs who have always been in business and clearly understand the risk and uncertainty that comes along with it. Although I have this background, I chose to work in Corporate India and America to gain experience that I cannot otherwise. I have always wanted to run a business and now with this experience and background coupled with my partner’s backing, feel it to the best time to be a dedicated entrepreneur

Techaloo: What was your vision/mission while starting protolution?
Prateek: Our mission is simple, we want to increase product success by identifying market fit early in the ideation phase thus saving valuable time and money. This product is focused on entrepreneurs and established businesses and will help them to test product prototypes quickly, economically and efficiently.

Techaloo: How did this idea come to your mind?
Prateek: Before creating Protolution, my partner and I were working on a startup that was focused on music. Although we decided not to progress with that business idea, we wanted to test our numerous other ideas and ended up spending a considerable amount of money on an online campaign and landing pages. It was difficult to get the right data we needed to invest time and money, so we started to work on our pain point: testing out a product economically and getting the right data so that we can make an informed decision

Techaloo: Why the name ‘Protolution’?
Prateek: Protolution is a combination of Prototype and Solution. We aim to be a tool that helps every entrepreneur and product focused business test their product prototypes in a crowd sourced manner.

Techaloo: What hurdle did you face while starting?
Prateek: I wouldn’t call them hurdles as such, but it was more focused on clearly understanding differentiation and product features that will be easy to understand. The key is to make a product that is simple but has essential features.

Techaloo: How does this work?
Prateek: Protolution is made for those with a product prototype to test. This crowdsourced platform allows entrepreneurs and established businesses to test and evaluate prototypes in a democratized way.

After creating an account, the poster uploads videos and pictures, links their website and social media profiles, creates an FAQ and posts for the world to see.

Potential users then give feedback in the form of likes, dislikes and comments. They may even register for the prototype to be part of the product development process. The prototype poster may request demographic details of the people that have participated in this process.

Techaloo: What are the prerequisites to launch a test?
Prateek:
All one needs is

  • Name of the product prototype
  • Short description of the prototype
  • Weblinks – website and/or social media links
  • Video through YouTube/Vimeo
  • Pictures to upload
  • FAQ section to answer potential questions

Once this is ready, you post and that’s it. People will give feedback in terms of likes, dislikes and comments.

Techaloo: What is your pricing model?
Prateek: We will not be charging during our beta but may charge once we go live.

As of now, we provide the following services:

 1. Post your Prototype

Share your prototype with users and get their feedback through likes, dislikes and comments.

 2. User Demographic Information

At sign up, our users have the optional ability to give their demographic information. This includes Social media most used, Income level, and Region (Country) amongst others.

3. Details of Registered Users

The prototype poster will receive the complete name and email address of people that participate in a prototype.

Techaloo: Who can register as a user of protolution?
Prateek: Protolution is made for those interested in knowing about the latest products in development, entrepreneurs, established product driven businesses, financiers such as incubators, accelerators, angel investors and venture capital companies

Techaloo: What are the benefits for the users, who are providing responses?
Prateek: Besides the intrinsic motivation of participating in something new and innovative, they also have access to innovative products and ideas. There is an option to register for the prototype which will give their name and email address to the product innovator. For registration the innovator will be giving an incentive in the form of coupons or free product. Lastly, they will be the first in the world to have the ability to use these products.

Techaloo: How are you different from other testing platforms?
Prateek: There are numerous ways in which we are different

Crowd sourced: Since we are crowd sourced, it is a very open platform to get feedback and participate in comments with potential users.

Focused crowd: Our users are those that are coming here to discover new products and are open to better ways of doing things. It will make a product developer’s life that much easier knowing that they are dealing with the right kind of people to test their ideas with.

Innovation focused: Protolution is one of the few platforms you will find online that is focused on discovering the latest and greatest ideas and prototypes in development.

Demographic reports include social media most used by this focused group that will help to plan a new products social media strategy.

Economical: Protolution is an economical way to test their ideas and prototypes

Every prototype is social media enabled and can be shared on all social platforms from one place.

Lastly, this is an industry agnostic platform that can be used to test any type of product prototype.

Techaloo: Which products are you targeting currently?
Prateek: We are only focused on products that can be shown through a prototype

Techaloo: How is the response till now?
Prateek: We are still in development and are very close to a beta. Till date, our beta testers are beyond 150 which to us is quite encouraging. This is not counting any of our friends or acquaintances. We were featured on Beta List that helped to increase sign ups – betalist.com/startups/protolution

Techaloo: What was the response from your family while starting?
Prateek: Our families have been extremeley supportive through the process. We don’t think we can do any of this without their support.

Techaloo: Do you want to share any experience good or bad with us?
Prateek: The best experience so far has been the excitement of creating a product that may help an entire generation of entrepreneurs and product developers.

Techaloo: What are your plans for next 3 years?
Prateek: In this online world, as much as we will plan it’s the market that will decide our fate.

That said, we would like to set up offices in developing entrepreneurial countries and hire people that are dedicated to building out partnerships for us.

Down the road, we hope to have strong relationships with incubators that can utilise Protolution’s testing services as an application tool for their programs.

Techaloo: Share some info about founders.
Prateek: Nishant Bhojwani is from an entrepreneurial background, graduated from UMASS Amherst in finance and joined his father in the early 2000’s in there business. Prateek Mathur has over 15 years of corporate India and America experience. They both specialize in creating strategic alliances and new product development.

Both Nishant and Prateek have known each other since the 1st standard and have decided to bring their combined experience and background together to create an entrepreneurial alliance.

Techaloo: What message do you want to give to an aspiring entrepreneur?
Prateek: The idea is worthless without execution so please validate every aspect before developing. As much as family and friends are great to test products with, reach out to potential customers and then develop products.

Think global from day one. When we started Protolution, we didn’t in our wildest dreams think that Russia would be a country from where we would be getting a lot of visitors from. This only has helped us to know that besides India and United States, Russia is a country where we should also learn more about.

Lastly, don’t forget the power of core – http://buff.ly/1Bz5NxO

We can be reached at protolution@protolution.com

Twitter @protolution

Techaloo: What do you think about techaloo.com?
Prateek: Techaloo.com has an ideal audience for a product like us. You foster entrepreneurship at the campus level and we are built for entrepreneurs. Hopefully, your audience at the campus level uses our services to test their idea and create products bigger than the leading ones out there.

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Mohit Bansal(23) is B.Tech in Electronics and Communication Engineering from Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad, India. He has interest in business and entrepreneurship and has published couple of research articles. He is also associated with various NGOs. He is with Techaloo when it was just in concept stage. The Techaloo site was not existing even then. Currently Mohit is working with Mu Sigma as a Business Analyst Profile.

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