Stratasys Blog

From The Digital Manufacturing Floor – Episode 2

Using Rapid Prototyping to Produce Parts for Sales Kits.

I’ve been emphasizing the value of using FDM Technology for low-volume production parts in some of my recent blog articles.

This week on the RedEye factory floor we had a volume job that was of interest to me. The job consisted of 4 unique parts with a total quantity of 200 parts. The intriguing thing was that these were for sales kits. Wow, a company is ordering this many parts just for sales kits?

Then it got me thinking. Stratasys and our sales and reseller network do the exact same thing. Our applications engineering department is constantly running hundreds of parts to help refresh these kits with new parts, encompassing new additive manufacturing applications.

For businesses that depend on selling products to other firms, what better tactic than to bring in a real part to explain how your product can benefit your customer. They say a “picture is worth a thousand words,” but a real part you can touch and feel would be even better.

Imagine now the benefits for start-ups or when your company is in the early phases of product design. Instead of presenting concepts or Photoshop drawings in a Powerpoint, come to a presentation with real models of concepts that people can hold and experiment with. There’s also the value of getting feedback from your customers before going off in the wrong direction with your design.

When your product is distributed through regional sales channels, you could either build one or two product concepts and fly around the country showing them, or you could build enough for each region so that the local sales channels can do the presentations simultaneously and get a better understanding of the new product they’re going to be selling. Competition is critical. What better strategy to gain customer confidence and end skepticism or indecisiveness!

The next time you need that sales edge consider using digital manufacturing as a way to communicate the advantages of your products.

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Tim Thellin

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