Depending on different sources, it is estimated that around 80% of new products fail. In this post, you will learn what to do in order to be in the 20% of successful launches.
1. Let the customer determine the product
My interviews with successful entrepreneurs (Biznes Ring by Agnieszka Węglarz, https://agnieszkaweglarz.com/wywiady/) show that their success came from observing the market and picking the unsolved problems of their clients. Rather than brainstorming about new product idea, they were letting their clients talk about their business challenges and problems and thinking how they could solve them.
2. Evaluate the potential of the market
Sales and marketing experts usually repeat that before even proceeding with developing a product you need to determine if there is actually a demand for it. In other words you need to make sure that the problem you have identified is repeatable and requires the same type of solution. This implies recurring demand and possibility to respond to it with a replicable offer.
3. Determine value in the product
This is a highly underrated moment in product commercialisation. In B2B value in the offer usually comes from adequate solution to Client’s problem. However, the common pitfall in new product development is limited amount of knowledge about the nature and the breadth of Client’s problems.
My interviews with management of companies providing new generation tech applications supporting sales processes show that their NPD teams had to carefully examine and map a whole range of problems and „pain points” in their Clients’ sales process in order to design really useful business applications.
4. Think of price from the very beginning
Another common pitfall is thinking of the price at the end of the process. We tend to set the price of our product by adding together all costs and adding our mark-up to derive the final price. It then often turns out that the price is too high compared to market alternatives.
What you should be doing instead is to set the price according to the perceived value of the product or service to the customer. The price can be based on the value of efficiency, ease of use or comfort of work – the value components should come from our value analysis when we were mapping our Clients’ problems and “pain points”. The key is to understand that we need to calibrate the price and value components from the very beginning of the process.
5. Talk with clients about your ideas, test and change
The pace at which market and clients change in many industries is overwhelming and requires great agility. If possible, test your idea on a specific audience before your launch. It’s important that these audiences are people in the industry who already know the specific concerns and pain points to which your product responds. Introduce necessary changes to the product idea before you invest in distribution and communication channels.
6. Choose your channels strategically
This doesn’t have to be a full blast communication. Examine your Clients’ customer journey and based on this choose key channels that will be your main focus. Choose those where you can meet the majority of your audience. If it’s social media – use its’ potential to engage people in your launch. Increase your reach through advocacy marketing.
7. Keep focus in your communication of the product
Remember that you’re launching your product into the ocean of new offerings. People are overburdened with messages. One of the biggest mistake that you can make is to overcomplicate the message. The industry jargon and a long list of features may overwhelm the audience.
Keep your communication simple and short: what makes your product stand out? Why is it different and better than others? In which way does it fulfil a need or solve a problem for your customers? Test your message with your audience and be ready to change it in full gear.
About the author: Agnieszka Węglarz is a strategist and practitioner in marketing, business and sales, with over 20 years of managerial experience in corporate environment. Since 2014 she works as independent consultant, as well as lecturer at Ican Institute, editor of Harvard Business Review Poland. Agnieszka is an expert in B2B business development, powerful speaker and business blogger.