Developing a New Product Development Strategy Before You Start the Manufacturing Process
Building a new product is full of excitement. But this excitement can quickly turn into a challenging assortment of tasks when a new product development strategy is not in place from the beginning. Though there are many lines of thought on how a new product development strategy should be constructed, it is beneficial to first consider the common challenges that can be encountered in a project’s lifespan. Below are some examples of how some common challenges can be tackled when building a new product development strategy.
Aligning the Economics of Development vs. Return
Regardless of how innovative or earth-shattering your concept is, the ability to balance the financial aspects surrounding it must be achieved to have a chance of it ever reaching the market. Two key points to keep in mind are:
- Ensuring profitability and functionality starts with determining the resources required for carrying out a project from concept through testing. This places a strong emphasis on ensuring that your product delivers a product that exceeds a customer’s expectations while being produced at a minimal cost.
- Your new product development strategy must then focus on reinforcing your product’s purpose and audience. The extra attention and diligence placed on a product while it is still in its conceptual stage will help to address any cost-related challenges before they can become a challenge.
Aligning these factors can help you build the necessary framework to make the best decisions to control costs—while still emphasizing quality—when considering material and labor costs, as well as to fine-tune a marketing plan.
Building a Market by Answering the Market
A crucial part of determining the financial viability of your product will be to know the market. You must have a firm grasp on:
- The potential audience for your product
- Current market gaps and how your product can be marketed as a solution to be used towards filling those gaps.
- How to maximize access to your product while providing post-sale support services in the markets where the product is sold.
An in-depth analysis of potential competitors of products performing some or all of the same functions as your product must be vetted out as well. This marketing analysis must consider any product that mimics any feature within your product, regardless of when it was or will be released. This will help you to develop a marketing strategy that sets your product apart from the others while getting the timing down on a release of your product to beat others to market.
Coordinating Design to Meet Production Expectations Equals Timing
Time is a fickle measurement. It can be both soothing and stress-invoking and is rarely friendly to those who need it back. The development of a design timeline is imperative to set realistic goals and to guide the project to hit the market at the exact right time. However, it is important to note that this initial timeline may need to change, and you should expect to build in agile design and testing tasks into a project plan as a result.
This is the perfect place to introduce the experienced eyes of a local manufacturing partner. Many manufacturing partners can offer their own internal design and testing resources, with some having templates built from similar projects that can quickly be applied to your own. Also, working with a local manufacturing partner eliminates any potential time-consuming bottlenecks that may come about due to differing cultural norms or excessive time zone differences.
Agility Is a Necessity to Stay Ahead of the Curve
An important aspect to achieve in the rapid design and development of an emerging product is agility. There are a number of variables that come into play that can affect the project timeline, and in many cases, these cannot be predicted until the project begins. This is why the development of a powerful document management process is so important; it will keep track of all project tasks and provide the design team with the ability to remain agile and make schedule changes.
Gaining the concise guidance of a manufacturing partner with proven strategic proficiency in new product development is a game-changing move. Not only will this assure all of the project stakeholders that you are taking agility seriously, but it will also provide an experienced set of eyes on all of the project’s moving pieces. And, the right manufacturing partner will have its own design and testing resources to lend to your team, becoming a valuable asset in your race to get a product to market.
A New Product Development Strategy Is Based on Planning and Documentation
Even though your product concept may have award-winning potential on paper, there is still a long journey before you go down the road to market. As even the best-laid plans can fail, it is important that you have a clear vision of the financials, marketability, and project coordination before you start. But you can seize the advantage by performing these advanced project planning steps and by partnering with a local manufacturing partner who can provide the services you need to see your project to completion.
PRL is an end-to-end manufacturer—we pride ourselves on handling every aspect of the process for our partners. Our experts are here to guide you through each step of design, prototyping, customer analysis, development, manufacturing, and delivery.