Three Things To Help Your Concept Succeed
Launching a new product can create a lot of anxiety. The time and resources dedicated to a new product can take months of planning and investment. The strategic goals associated with a new product are incremental revenue and growing the customer base for starters. But if no customer research is done, those forecasts of success likely have many unknowns. Here are three considerations that help ensure a new product matches the company's goals.
Clearly Define The Benefits Of The Product
The new product's benefits and features might make sense to the internal stakeholders, but unless they buy it, they might create bias in the forecast. The target audience for the new product must see and understand the benefits the product will provide. If your sales team creates an "elevator pitch" crafted from client feedback through concept testing, your customers will be more likely to purchase as they have help craft the compelling reason to buy.
Incorporating feedback from your existing clients is paramount when designing a new product. When you directly align the benefits to the client's feedback, new customers and target audiences will produce stronger validation for purchase. While this might seem intuitive, the ability to simply and effectively communicate this value proof is not always achieved. Keep the benefits focused on the top two or three instead of a list of benefits. Your audience will likely only remember one or two, so make sure you promote those benefits that the majority of your audience will find interesting.
Align The Product Message As A Solution
Product preference by a customer is at the epicenter of a new product. Products need to bridge the customers buying decision from "maybe it would work" to "gotta have it". The key is understanding what motivates the customer's preferences and what is driving them to that decision. New products must be compelling at first sight and engagement. If the product is positioned as a solution to a known customer problem, the purchase can be justified much faster. Ensuring the product research explores the different customer pain points and how the new product solves the issue better than alternatives is a good step towards a successful product.
Test (And Retest) The Product Concept Before The Launch
Concept testing does not and should not be a one-time event. Good concept testing employs an iterative process to refine and improve the product based on customer feedback. Taking steps to engage the target audience to investigate the concept can save both time and budget. Products where post-launch has to be "reassessed" can often be attributed to not testing the concept properly before launch. And since concept testing can be fast and provide insights into the customer's needs and wants from a new product, the investment in conducting concept testing can deliver better sales and customer satisfaction starting day one.
But ensuring that the right type of concept testing is being done is also critical. Testing can include the colors, naming, features the product offers, pricing, packaging, etc. So when approaching a concept test, the need to correctly identify and investigate the unknowns or items that have the most concern for the organization about the product. Use concept testing to remove those unknowns and ambiguity from the plan by getting data and customer input to improve the forecast. Concept testing will not guarantee.