Trial periods aren't limited to testing your product(s) either. Speakers emphasized the importance of dedicating checkpoints to testing your ideas with people inside and outside of your organization throughout product development and launch.
This could mean pitching to a panel of investors (shout out, Shark Tank!), reviewing the need state of the brand through focus groups, or testing the viability of technologies for growing the business. Whatever it is that's being created or reviewed – testing it along every step of the way will yield the best results and provide (unexpected) insights to improve upon!
Some strong takeaways from the speakers and panelists that inspired us:
Eytan Elbaz (Social Native Co-Founder and Former Google Exec): "Making problems an opportunity is how we proved to be successful."
"Trying new things constantly is the only way to improve people, products and image."
Cauri Jaye (Rhubarb Studios): "True innovation takes more than people across different disciplines – it takes people who actually THINK differently and bring those experiences to the table. It's not just Marketing people and HR people – it's the analytical mind, the aloof dreamer, the doer, etc. that truly brings innovation."
Delali Kpodzo (We Are Onyx): "The UX Designer is about taking down obstacles – not just button size and location."
Neil Ishibashi (Fandango): "The difference between actual innovation and invention? Innovation is taking the invention, making a business and having it appeal to the masses. An example is Carl Freidrich Gauss and Alexander Graham Bell and the invention of the telephone. One invented it, the other took the invention, made it better and was able to expand the idea for all people."
To recap, Silicon Beach Fest '16 made it clear that today's startups see testing as the most valuable route to innovation. Don't be afraid to get your product out there throughout its development cycle! The feedback could end up being critical to its long-term success.