It’s no exaggeration to say that developing new products and services is essential for business success. New products and services inject fresh life into a business. They keep a business relevant, prosperous and profitable. But where do you start? And when? Here’s a quick summary of the key first steps and considerations.
Step 1: Evaluating your proposed new product or service from the business’s perspective
This very early stage is about testing lots of different service or product ideas to see which are feasible for your business. This will involve:
- Identifying how the new product or service ties in with your business strategy.
- Assessing factors like resources, technology, design and manufacturing requirements, regulatory frameworks and environmental impact.
- Sounding out key stakeholders, including team members, core suppliers and top customers to see what they think of your plans.
Step 2: Researching the market
This is where you identify how your product or service will fulfil customers’ needs. Your market research should pinpoint:
- How customers’ needs are currently met.
- What the competition has to offer.
- Why customers would choose your product or service over the competition (USP, benefits to customers).
Step 3: Deciding your pricing strategy
When establishing a pricing strategy or framework, you’ll need to consider factors such as:
- The value your product or service brings to the customer.
- Competitors’ pricing (or whether you’re first to market).
- Selling or distribution channels.
- How much it costs to develop, launch and run the product or service.
Getting your timing right
Every product or service goes through the same natural lifecycle:
- Development phase – where you’re developing your new offering.
- Introduction phase – where you launch and promote it.
- Growth phase – where your product or service is getting established and sales are rising.
- Maturity phase – where sales growth has slowed, or potentially even stalled.
- Decline – where competition has increased and sales begin to fall.
The idea is to have at least one part of your range in the growth phase at any one time. In other words, as one product or service reaches maturity, you should have new ideas in the works, ready to launch before your existing offering begins to decline.
This emphasises the importance of continually investing in new development – and getting expert support when you need it. That’s where OCTOPUS comes in. From market research and pricing to launch campaigns, we can help you develop your new products and services, and successfully bring them to market. Learn more.
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