Estimates suggest that around 90% of new products do not reach the market. Sadly, this disappointment could have been prevented if innovators had taken the time to validate their ideas before going ahead with them.
In this blog post, I’ll discuss how you can avoid failure and increase your chances for success with your new product idea. I’ll also introduce our 10-point idea validation program, which will help you assess the feasibility of your vision and reduce risk. So don’t let your great idea go to waste – follow these tips and get started today.
While launching a successful product may seem daunting, the process can be made much simpler by following three key steps:
• Identify an authentic issue that your target market struggles with
• Provide a viable solution at an affordable cost
• Get in front of as many of your target market as you can
But this is only the start. Ideas are often not validated initially, with much hard work to bring them to fruition. That’s why we have developed a 10-point idea validation program that helps reduce risk and maximise opportunities for success – although it is not foolproof. This program ensures that potential ideas are investigated thoroughly – ensuring they won’t be too expensive to produce, they’re technically feasible, or they don’t already exist on the market.
Ideas often fail due to a lack of passion from the innovator – with enough enthusiasm to persevere through the long development and launch process, success can be easier to come by. So it’s essential to pick a new idea that excites you if you want to succeed in getting it off the ground. People generally work best and hardest when inspired and driven by their passion and enthusiasm for what they are doing, so make sure you take the time to pick an idea that genuinely ignites your fire!
I personally had an idea for a lockable toilet brush but realised I didn’t want to devote several years of my life developing and selling such products – surely there was something more glamorous out there for me!?
Identify a genuine issue that your intended audience has
Identifying a genuine issue your intended audience has is often the most crucial step in developing a successful product. Before you move on to the development and testing stages, you need to establish an actual need for the product – otherwise, it will never reach its target market. To do this, research should be conducted into the overall market and potential customer base through surveys or interviews. Once you have identified a genuine issue, you can start developing the solution to your problem.
Provide a viable solution at an affordable cost
Once you have identified a genuine issue your intended audience has, the next step is to develop a viable solution that meets their needs at an affordable cost. Your product must provide value to customers and be able to compete with similar products that already exist on the market. To achieve this, it is essential to research current solutions and consider how yours could be more efficient or effective than those.
Get in front of as many of your target market as you can
On many occasions, I’ve experienced the importance of getting in front of my target market while developing a new product. After creating a prototype, I made a point to attend industry events and focus groups to conduct customer surveys. Through these interactions, I discovered that certain features were more important to customers than others, allowing me to make adjustments before launching the product. These insights from the target market were crucial to developing a successful product. Do not fall into the arrogance trap of assuming that you know everything your target market wants. Also, don’t let your design team persuade you that they know best. The customer is always right. Everyone else, including you, is fallible!
By getting in front of your target market and listening to their feedback, you can ensure that your product is the perfect solution for their needs and increase your chance of success. Understanding what your customers are looking for and how they will use your product will help you create something truly valuable.
Create a minimum viable product (MVP)
With an MVP, you have something tangible which can be used during market research or even a soft launch to test the waters and validate that your target market will buy the product. Using an MVP, you can also experiment with pricing, look and messaging to ensure it stands out from competitors. This approach gives you a laser like focus on what actually matters to your customers and what will mean you sell more product and make more money. It is used throughout physical and software new product launches to minimize risk and investment whilst maximizing the chance of success.
The importance of timing
Timing plays a huge role in the success of a new product launch. If you hit the market too early, your technology may not be ready yet, and there might not be enough demand for it. On the other hand, if you wait too long, you risk missing out on potential customers as they may have already moved on to something else or losing the first mover advantage to one of your competitors.
The Nissan Leaf is a prime example of how bad timing can ruin a product launch. When the car was first introduced in 2010, it had all the features necessary for an electric vehicle, such as a longer range and faster charging times than its competitors. However, there were very few public charging stations at the time, which significantly limited its appeal.
When Volkswagen released the ID.3 in 2020, it was successful because the infrastructure for electric vehicles had improved significantly, and fuel prices had increased due to the pandemic. This perfect timing made the car a hit, with more orders being placed than production capacity.
Focus on the money
I’ve seen many ideas and new businesses fail due to a lack of funds. A clear investment plan and securing the necessary financing is essential before you run out of money. With sufficient capital, you can ensure that your product launch runs smoothly, meets customer expectations, and comes to market at the right time.
Investing in the right areas, such as marketing and customer surveys, guarantees that your product reaches its target customers and provides them with an adequate solution. Additionally, it is vital to have a budget for contingencies in case the launch goes differently than planned or unexpected costs arise.
Before launching a new product or business, it is essential to consider both the value to customers and the development cost. With proper research, timing and funding, you can create a successful product launch that meets customer needs and generates revenue. Working with an experienced advisor or investor can also be beneficial in understanding what your target market is looking for and how to secure the necessary financing for the launch best.
Our 10-point idea validation program
Idea validation is a critical step in creating a successful product. It involves investigating potential ideas to ensure they are feasible, cost-effective, and don’t already exist on the market. To effectively validate an idea, we’ve developed a 10-point program that covers testing and certification, marketing insights, benchmarking, technical feasibility, manufacturing feasibility, basic physical models, safety reviews, patent search, routes to market and timing.
The time spent researching and validating your new idea is invaluable – so don’t be afraid to ask questions, test the market and be creative.
All in all, launching a new product is an exciting yet challenging process. It requires research and dedication to ensure success. Innovators must consider the timing of their launch, focus on the money involved, and conduct thorough idea validation before releasing it into the market. If you want help validating your ideas or more information about our 10-point program, don’t hesitate to contact us today!
We would love to discuss how we can ensure your product launch is successful.
Having worked with hundreds of Start-Ups and SMEs we’ve learned a thing or so about getting a project off to the right start.
Don’t miss out on this invaluable guide to turning your idea into the next big thing!
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Bonus 40min extended case-study video!