Pretotyping - Testing business ideas

Pretotyping: Rapid Experimentation of Ideas

Pretotyping is a set of tools, techniques, and tactics designed to help you validate any idea for a new product quickly, objectively, and accurately. The goal is pretotyping is to help you make sure that you are building The Right It before you build It right.

Pretotyping was originally developed at Google in 2010 and since then has been tested, refined, taught, and put into practice with great success in hundreds of projects and organizations.

7 out of 10 new Products fail to Deliver on Expectations, Pretotyping aims to Reverse That Statistic

Pretotyping - Testing business ideas
Program OutcomesWhat does this mean?
Reduce RiskTo de-risk your business or product idea
Improve FocusUnderstand the main areas of focus based on desirability, viability and feasibility
Build KnowledgeTo give you the knowledge to run your own tests

We are Certified Pretoptypes

We are certified Pretotypers, having trained with Exponentially in Australia. They worked across Australia’s biggest industries, including utilities, financial services, education, and insurance. The creator of Pretotyping has fully endorsed the training, and we look forward to helping you build “The Right It”.

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What Is Pretotyping

The best way to explain pretotyping is through examples, so let’s look at one. On the left is a pretotype of the Palm Pilot next to the final product.

The founder of Palm Computing, Jeff Hawkins, mocked up a Palm Pilot with wood and paper; then carried it with him for weeks pretending it was a working device. His objective was to learn if he would actually use such a device before going to the next, very expensive and time-consuming step, of building an actual working prototype.

Even though Hawkins did not use the term pretotyping (because we hadn’t made it up yet) that’s exactly what he was doing; simulating the core experience of having and using a Palm Pilot with the smallest possible investment of time and money to see if he would actually carry and use it.

Pretotyping Differs From Prototyping in one Important Respect:

The main objective of prototyping is to answer questions related to building the product. Can we build it? Will it work as expected? How cheaply can we build it? How fast can we make it?

The main objective of pretotyping is to answer questions about the product’s appeal and usage. Would people be interested in it? Will they use it as expected? Will they continue to use it? …

Pretotyping - Testing business ideas
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Testing business ideas - David Bland
Pretotyping - Testing business ideas

Founder of Pretotyping

Alberto Savoia

Alberto is a serial innovator and entrepreneur driven by engineering great solutions for large technology giants and small startups. After early success in pre-IPO Sun Microsystems and Google (including being the first Engineering Director at Google and launching Google’s AdWords product), he launched two of his own startups. He then returned to Google as their Innovator At Large. Since that time he has been a thought leader, helping successful companies become more successful with the tools, techniques, and tactics they need to become Apex Innovators.

In 2019 he published the official pretotyping book, “The Right It”, through HarperOne.

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Pretotyping and Rapid Experimentation is not just a Process, but a Mindset Shift

It challenges you not only to get comfortable with failure but to celebrate it. In a culture that often demonises and shames us for failing, this can be a formidable barrier to overcome both personally and within your team.

But When Done Correctly, Pretotyping will Always be Successful. 

It might not deliver you the data you wanted, but it will provide you with highly relevant, valuable data that will prevent you from draining your time and resources.

It’s a Rigorous Method that Delivers Reliable Data and Allows Wider Organisations to Make Well-informed Choices. 

When people understand that, a lot of the fear, trepidation and confusion around the method declines, and you’re in for a smoother ride.

Testing business ideas - Pretotyping
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Pretotyping - Testing business ideas
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Training Workshops – Building Capability

Initial training workshops are the first step in the method and are run in various formats, both online and in-person. They are devised to build the Pretotyping capacity of core team members, from basic knowledge to designing real-world Pretotypes.

The aim is to train your team in the fundamentals of Pretotyping and rapid experimentation, ensure that the innovation team and the entire company are aligned and ready to build “The Right It”.

Learn the skills, processes and tools needed for designing and running world-class business experiments.

Pretotyping - Testing business ideas