About five years ago, Blake Hodgson and some friends were building a smart home device to regulate heat. The project didn’t work out because it cost too much money to build, but Blake realized he enjoyed the product development process and decided to start a business.
Today, he owns KC Proto, which specializes in helping startups, small businesses and advertising agencies create physical products. He uses the latest rapid prototyping techniques, open source hardware and software to create minimal viable products in aggressive timelines.
“We have a really great inventor community here in Kansas City,” said Blake. “I just started helping wherever I could for people to make their prototypes of their inventions. I realized people would pay me money for this.”
One of his favorite projects is a remote control lawnmower that he uses. He was inspired by the movie, “Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.”
During our discussion, Blake also shares:
- Unique projects he has worked on and why he can’t discuss them all
- How he started his business
- What it’s like getting products to market and why that’s so difficult
- Whether he has any competitors in business
- What makes someone an ideal client
- How Covid has affected his business
Use the timestamps below to skip around to the specific topics you’d like to hear.
[1:08] – Meet Blake Hodgson
[1:43] – How Blake got into the business
[3:30] – Projects he’s worked on
[6:09] – How he started his business
[7:21] – Big picture view of his business
[8:48] – The building process
[16:27] – Getting products to market
[19:52] – Does he have competitors?
[20:39] – Ideal clients
[21:38] – How Covid has affected his business
[25:36] – What drives him
[26:14] – Why should people do business with him