03 Oct 7 steps of market research before launching a new product
Launching a new product can often be the culmination of a life-long dream to realise the next goal of a business. However, before the road to launch can begin, the first step needs to be considered; that of research.
Now, the research phase is integral: not only will it help you get a clearer idea of what the current uptake of your planned product in the market will be, but you will also be more informed to brief your industrial design team on what exactly you require and what the functionality will be what you need your product to include.
In today’s blog, we are taking a look at the most important steps to consider for market research before launching a new product – and what you need to consider so that you will have successful market entry.
Let’s start with the first step.
1. Research if there is a need in your target market for your product – and if you are solving a problem
A big part of the first stage of your research is determining if there is a need for your product. Even if you have an incredible product idea, if it has been done before, you either need to refine your plans or start over. Ultimately, your product needs to solve a problem that your target customers have – otherwise, your product will not be serving any purpose.
During this step, it could be a good idea to reach out to your industrial design team to get their input on your proposed project, and how you can fine-tune your idea to ensure you are bringing something to market that is unique and that will address a customer need which others have yet to successfully address. This is where step 2 comes in …
2. Keep an eye on your competitors
Have your competitors already launched something similar that you have in mind? Did they achieve success, or did they fail, and has this left a gap in the market that you can address with a fresh new concept?
The important thing to remember, is that your planned product must not fall into the trap of just replicating something that is already available to customers with a few bells and whistles. It must truly be something fresh and new with its own authentic design that will set you apart from your competitors and make it easier to distinguish your brand too.
3. Consider your budget and whether you will be able to meet market demand
Once you’ve identified that there is a market for your product, that your competitors do not have something similar on their books and that you will be able to solve a problem that your consumers have, you now need to consider your budget and what you will be able to spend on your project in full, including prototyping and manufacturing, marketing and distribution. The scope of your project should include every touchpoint, otherwise, you might not ultimately have the funds to fully complete your product’s journey.
4. Review whether you will be able to manufacture your planned product in-house or not – and plan accordingly
Manufacturing your product doesn’t need to be done in-house necessarily if you do not have the needed facilities – however, this means you need to decide whether you will outsource or offshore production. Both options can be cost-effective, and basically boils down to preferences of proximity or being comfortable with a service provider that is not in the same country.
If, however, you are handling manufacturing in-house, you will need to consider time and overhead costs, as well as any other material costs. This is why step 5 is vital, as it will guide you on how to use materials for your planned product optimally.
5. Identify your preferred industrial designer and make rapid prototyping part of your plan
Your industrial design team will not only create the initial design of your planned product – they will also perform rapid prototyping to give you a tangible example of how your planned product will look, and identify if any edits will be needed to perfect the overall design.
What makes this step so important, is that you, as the client, will know that your product will be viable and will work as you envisioned it would. Also, industrial designers have access to various methods for rapid prototyping, which will make it easy to create prototypes in a short amount of time, but with incredible detail.
6. Consider how your next project will flow from the current one you are planning
Are you planning a range of products that will complement one another? If so, it is important that you do not delay the development process or procrastinate to a point where you are, in fact, keeping two products from launching. During your research, start looking at “what will be next”, following your product lifecycle. This “next” will keep your research going and help you stay competitive too.
7. Review your full plan, and then take action
If you have ticked all the boxes of establishing that you will have a viable product, that there is a need for it, that you have the fund for this product and have access to capabilities and skills to take it to market, you will know that you are ready to kick off your product planning and be on your way to launch your product.
So, do the research. It is worth your time and effort.
If you are a potential client and you are ready to experience an exceptional journey of design for your next project with amazing results, contact us today. We would love to hear from you and to provide the personal touch that we have become known and respected for as one of Melbourne’s leading industrial design teams!