So you’ve been through design and development, gone out and found your investors, found your supply chain, set up your offices, manufacturing center and your sales staff, and you have the idea, funds and infrastructure to bring your product into the marketplace.
Though it might seem that the hard work is done, it’s really just beginning, especially if this is your first venture into the market. There are a lot more uncertainties out in that realm than there are in the processes of designing, developing and manufacturing your product.
You’re bound to have questions, but you should know that you’re not alone: Every new product designer does. Here are some of the most common questions that you will have to answer before you bring your great new idea to the marketplace.
Who is my target market?
This is a vital question, and it’s surprising how often this comes up. You need to have a specific demographic in mind for your product – otherwise you’ll be casting too large a net. This is a case where investors might be able to help you. Anyone who invests in your product will probably have a pretty good theory on who will be buying it.
How do I get my product noticed?
There are bound to be other products with similar functions or audiences competing with yours, no matter how unique your idea is. It’s vital to seek out all of the social media, marketing and advertising options available to you, and don’t be afraid to think outside the box.
Yes, that’s an overused phrase, but that doesn’t make it less relevant. Be prepared to move outside of traditional marketing methods to make your product stand out.
What’s the most inexpensive way I can bring my product to market?
In a sense, this question might be an indicator of a self-defeating strategy. Obviously, every good entrepreneur tries not to spend more money than they have to, but take a closer look at what this question really implies. A product launch is probably not something you want to be frugal about, and product manufacturing is CERTAINLY not one of those things, either.
This is a do-or-die moment, and as much as you might be nervous about spending your investors’ money, this is the time to do it. Skimping on quality, or sales staff, or marketing, could be fatal mistake for your business, all the name of saving money right now instead of making money down the road.
How important is the launch date?
Missing the launch date, or delaying your product in any way can be a bad sign to investors and to the buying public. It might send the message that you’ve had second thoughts about your product or your manufacturing process or even your funding?
First impressions are vital, especially in business. Meeting your launch date with a fully prepared product and a fully equipped company behind it could be your only chance to impress the people you’re trying to attract.
In other words, avoid delay at all costs. Don’t worry about being early. Worry about being on time.
When should I become concerned about my product’s performance?
Patience is perhaps the most important part of a long-term strategy. It’s easy to be discouraged if the early indicators are poor, but that’s just what they are: Early indicators. As difficult as it may be to remain calm and keep working, it’s important not to cut your losses too early.
It’s a sign that you don’t have faith in your own product, and that will reflect on the product, your business and your investors. Yes, it’s probably someone else’s money you’re working with, but they had faith in your product, and so should you.
To learn more about taking your product to market, read “A Brief Guide to Taking Your Product to Market: What Happens After Perfecting Your Product?“