Launching a new product can be a major turning point for any company. It can result either in success and growth for the company, or in failure. A failed product launch can have huge financial implications for the business and in many cases; it has resulted in closure of the business. In the current economy, successful product development is essential to ensure that the business survives in a competitive market place. There are tips that can help you to ensure success.
1. Developing a budget
You cannot realize a successful product launch without setting aside a realistic budget for the entire project. Running out of funds before completion of the process is a recipe for disaster. Projects that are poorly funded do not often survive to the launch phase. On the other hand, overfunding the project can lead to wastage and can compromise other business functions. It is important to come up with a comprehensive plan in order to set a realistic budget.
2. Market research
Before you launch a product, you need to find out if there is a market for it. You will be wasting your resources if you try to reinvent the wheel or develop a product that no one wants or needs. Focus on creating a product that you can sell, or that will fulfill a certain need. Trying to come up with something unique or outstanding will not help you much when you cannot find anyone to buy it. Market research is a very crucial stage of product development. Get feedback from potential customers, dealers and other parties, in order to determine issues like positioning and pricing of the product.
3. Get customers opinion
Your opinion does not really count when it comes to launching a new product. You need to find out what the end users think. It helps to observe the customers to find out where they are spending their money and their time. The only way to provide a solution is to find out what the problem is in the first place. Observing and asking questions is a good place to start and social media has helped to make this process much easier.
4. Provide a sample
Trying to explain a concept to people using just words can be an uphill task. It is impossible to get your message across when the person cannot get an accurate picture in their mind. Two people can hear or read the same thing and come up with two different interpretations. By using a prototype, you can have a good place to start when talking to consumers or even creating the product. The prototype will help you to establish whether the product will meet the requirements, and it can save you the cost of mass-producing products that do not meet the market needs.
5. Refining the concept
Creating a product is not complete before refining the concept and coming up with a great product the first time round. Many companies put a lot of work into creating products that are missing key components and the result is that they have to use more time and resources to come up with a new and improved product. When you come up with a good product the first time round, you will not have to go into the process of creating an improved version. It is also important to note that if the first version fails, people might be skeptical about trying any future products. Good research and prototyping will help to ensure that oversights do not occur.
6. Collecting feedback
When your product is in the market, you have to collect feedback so that you can establish its success. Making a few sales does not mean that the product is successful. Many times people buy a product because it is a new thing, only to abandon it when they realize it is not something they really needed. You need to take the time to study the feedback before you can move on to something else. The first few months after the launch should be a time to learn so that you can find out any changes you may need to make.
In order to ensure that you generate significant revenue from your product, you have to nurture it and come up with effective tools to market it to a wide audience. The first few months are crucial and you cannot afford to abandon your “baby” before he is ready to start walking.
CF is an avid blogger who is passionate about product development. He has written several articles about prototype development and marketing. He actively offers information and advice to inventors and to small business owners.