Developing A New Product? Look Before You Leap
The market is the only parameter your company cannot modify. Before committing to developing your own product, it is advisable to do extensive research as this would provide guidance in planning and help you decide whether or not to take the plunge.
Market research is needed to qualify an idea for business growth and is an insurance policy against wasting time, energy and financial resources on the wrong opportunity that may not be all that firmly anchored in reality. It’s crucial to check for—
- technical feasibility
- existing patents
- market size
- distribution potential and
- market demand among others
With respect to market demand, get feedback from potential users or customers to assess if you want to go through all the hassle of creating your own product. In the process, you most likely have to wrestle between features and the cost of the product. That’s why we recommend that you define what your product will and won’t do early on in the game.
Know your customers
While it’s true that nobody knows your product like you do, it would be foolish not to approach experts who are in a unique position to give you the most objective and brutally honest assessment. And while there are many successful products that defy conventional wisdom, you’d benefit from testing your assumptions before you make any financial commitments and give the project a go. Interestingly, even Apple does market research despite stating the contrary.
The best way is to conduct interviews with prospective users and industry consultants who can give you valuable insight particularly with regards to features as well as how much they’d be willing to pay for your product, then decide accordingly what you are willing to compromise on. The single biggest problem in new product development is not fully understanding the product, how it will be used, and who it will be sold to. You can have the best designers, best engineers, best manufacturer, best sales and marketing team, do everything by the book and still fall flat on your face if your target market is everybody, then chances are you will fail. The wider you aim, the less likely you are to hit your specific mark.
In addition to interviews, you can also do research on similar products via forums and online retailers like Amazon where users are free to post comments.
So to summarize, ask yourself the following—
- Does it satisfy or create a market need? Will it outlive passing trends?
- What specific demographic are you targeting?
- Is it unique, or superior to those offered by competitors?
- Have you read reviews for existing products that are similar? This will help you learn from your competition's mistakes.
- What competition will it face - direct or indirect, national or global?
- Does the product need to comply with relevant regulations, legislation, or certifications?
- What price will the market want your product at?
- Why would customers choose your product rather that that of your competition?
- Have you checked whether there are patents existing for similar devices?
- Is your idea even technically feasible? If the technology were there to have a laptop run for 24 hours, Apple would have done it already.
Once you decide to go full speed ahead, contact us and we can do the rest. Titoma Design has been developing and manufacturing electronic products in China and Taiwan for over a decade. You’ll be in good hands.
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