The Need for a New Product Strategy
The Need for a New Product Strategy
Although product innovation must be part of the everyday activity of the ONLINE MARKETING department, the importance of the selection and development of new products means that an agreed policy must be decided by the senior management of the company. They must decide who will be responsible for devising and presenting new products. Since concentrated effort is required, the task must be separated from routine activities and routine pressures. Sometimes new product development is undertaken by a committee. In this case, is it necessary to include representatives of the design, finance and production departments as well as the sales and ONLINE MARKETING departments. Where one person is given this responsibility, he must have sufficient authority to ask for, and to obtain, the assistance and the advice of these other sectors of the organization.
Whether a committee or a single individual is given responsibility for the development of new products, the brief must include the collecting, investigating and testing of ideas and the screening of the new products derived from them to ensure that the whole undertaking is properly controlled and co-ordinated.
In some organizations, it is the Brand or Product Manager who is responsible for new products. In other companies, a Product Planner is appointed. He is freed of the responsibility for the routine ONLINE MARKETING of existing products. Finally, there are Product Policy Committees, made up of members of the production, research, selling and ONLINE MARKETING departments.
By delegating the detailed work of product innovation, the ONLINE MARKETING Manager may more easily see the wood for the trees. He must not, however, lose sight of the fact that the introduction of new products to the right market at the right time is one of his essential responsibilities which must engage a considerable proportion of his time and energy.
One cannot lay down a formula which will guarantee the success of a new product. Certain basic conditions do, however, apply to all successful product innovations. The quality of the new brand must be at least equal to that of competitive brands already on the market and should possess some additional benefit not to be found in the currently available products. Adequate research must have been undertaken to establish that there is, in fact, a market for the product and also that the market is ready to receive this particular product. In the highly competitive field of consumer goods, accurate forecasts of the size of the market and of the potential sale for the product are essential. Furthermore a new product should only be launched when all the necessary testing has been satisfactorily completed. It is a mistake to rush a new product onto the market to counter the activities of competitors without thorough market research and a full technical evaluation of the product itself.
A company operating in the consumer goods field in 2015 must always try to be objective about its products. This is particularly true in the case of its new ventures. As soon as it becomes apparent that a new product is likely to fail, the company must be prepared to withdraw it immediately. There are occasions when it requires considerable courage and determination to stop a new product 'in its tracks'. When a promotion, which has occupied the time and energies of a large number of people-including
outside agencies-has been set in motion, there is a great temptation to let it continue to roll. The ONLINE MARKETING Manager must be capable of acting ruthlessly to cut his losses; otherwise he may find that too much expense has been incurred in the attempt to launch the new product. A 'point of no return' may have been reached when his company may decide to press on with the ill-starred project in a vain hope that it may achieve sufficient sales to recover at least part of its promotion costs.
Quite apart from the very considerable financial loss which may be incurred, the failure of a new product which has reached the retail shops involves its manufacturer in a possibly more serious loss: that of the goodwill of the distributor. The retailer's shelves and display areas are some of his most valuable assets. To fill them with a failed brand is to do him a great disservice, one which he will not quickly forget.
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