According to Professor Clayton Christensen from the Harvard Business School, only about 20 percent of product launches are successful. The remaining 80 percent fail!
The reiteration of this statistic is not intended to provide discouragement for business owners. Instead, the message is intended to call attention to the importance of being well prepared for the launch of a product.
The tasks necessary to realize success when preparing for a product launch can be broken down into three main categories.
Your marketing efforts can be the life or death of your product. No product can sell if potential buyers are unaware of its existence.
Our team at Initiate Lift does everything it can to get your product into the right hands. But in order to do that, you first need to know what the right hands are.
The first consideration of marketing a product is identifying a target audience. This step is critical because the channels of promotion used to achieve product awareness for one demographic may be useless with another.
Once the target audience is identified, determine the best way to reach your customers. If reaching the target audience by mail is a good option, them make sure you verify the address of your potential customers. Create detailed buyer personas based on what you know (or what you can confidently assume) about your customers. Understanding every detail about your target audience’s likes, dislikes, interests, preferences, dreams, desires, income, relationship status, and life experiences will provide you with useful insight into everything from product and packaging design to which channels to use to connect with potential buyers.
A good manufacturer is worth its weight in gold. When searching for the right manufacturer to help bring your product idea to fruition, a number of issues should be taken into consideration, including lead time. Lead time is the amount of time it takes for your product to reach your customer. To be successful, it’s essential that you take steps to reduce your lead time.
The first consideration is whether you wish to employ the services of a domestic manufacturer. The other possibility is choosing a distributor from another country. Once this decision is made, potential manufacturers should be investigated for a variety of qualifications that include:
- Product capabilities
- Quality control
- Product expertise
Another consideration when choosing where to have your product manufactured is finding dependable shipping or freight solutions for getting your products to distributors.
When choosing a distributor for your products, it is important to understand the distribution channels for your particular industry. The four main distribution options are:
- Direct purchases from a manufacturer
- Finding an exclusive distributor that will sell to smaller wholesalers
- A regional distributor that will sell boxloads to local wholesalers
- A jobber that makes deliveries to local stores
The choice of a distributor is crucial. You should make sure the distributor is the perfect fit to meet the needs of your target audience.
The launch of a new product is an exciting time for business owners, but it will take proper preparation to make the product launch successful. Business owners that take the time to market to their target audience, partner with the right manufacturer, and choose a distributor that fits their needs have a good chance of realizing success with a product launch.