Posted in Marketing & Strategy Articles, Total Reads: 1960
, Published on 25 June 2014
Companies always find ways to engage customers. It can be through new innovations, improvements in existing products, improved communication to reach out to new customers, different pricing strategies etc. Through these means customers can be efficiently tapped which helps in the overall growth of business. But it is quite essential for companies to constantly introduce new products in their portfolio, along with improving the existing products and services. But bringing new products in the market is not a very easy task, no matter how established the brand. In fact, the bigger the brand, the more is the reputation at stake for an organisation.
New product development is a systematic process, where effectively a new market is to be created where either competition does not exist or it is to keep up with the customer needs and requirements.
Image Courtesy: Freedigitalphotos.net, Stuart Miles
Mentioned below are a few processes which are undertaken to launch new products in the market.
1. Understanding market and studying behaviour
The primary stage of a new launch is to identify a new market and studying the buying behaviour. In case it is a completely new product, then behaviour of people using old or substitute products must be studied, which would be helpful in analysing a potential market.
2. Segmenting the market
Once a market is identified, then the population must be segmented basis the parameters which would exhibit a homogeneous behaviour. For eg. for a lipstick brand it is necessary to identify a segment of girls which use a particular type of lipstick or have a similar preference.
3. Identifying potential target groups
Once the market is thoroughly segmented, then possible target groups are identified. It is mostly the case that only a few target groups are identified. For every product, a target group has to be definitely defined, as it would lay down the foundation for the entire process to follow.
4. Creating multiple products and offerings
Whenever a new product is to be launched, it is a must to try a variety of offers. Each offer must be creates keeping in mind the customers needs. Often it happens that the company's best product is actually different from the one that the customer falls for. Hence, a healthy number of offers are always beneficial.
5. Testing on sample basis and comparing with control group
Once a few products are made, samples identical to the population must be tested. The products must be shared with different samples from different parts of the geography. Each product must be studied basis the product acceptance, product purchase, customer demographics, locations etc. In fact, customers as well as potential customers can also be quizzed about the product, which can help in doing minor tweaks before product finalisation.
6. Selecting best product with respect to price, acceptability and customer response
This is the most critical step in a product launch. After studying multiple products and studying the pros and cons, a business call needs to taken on which is the final product that would finally be launched. Parameters like number of products sold, repeat customers, customer responses etc must be done, and a final product must be finalised on priority.
7. Preparing communication plan and channel
Once a final product is decided, a proper communication and marketing plan must be decided. Communication channels like TVCs, online media, print ads, hoardings, OOH media etc all must be evaluated so as to find the beat ROI and maximum brand reach. If necessary brand ambassadors must be identified which are the most popular with the potential target audience
8. Launching the product
With the final product decided and all the communication in place, systematic execution of the plan needs to be undertaken along with the proper supply chain management to ensure that there is no customer loss and that a purchase is complete for a new product.
People will always be looking for new ways to fulfil their ever increasing needs. It could be through changing brands or opting for different products or even using substitute products. In such a case, a company must constantly be on the lookout for innovations and creating newer better offerings. And to do that, it is very essential for one to do their homework. After all, a new brand needs to find a way to the customers mind and heart!
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