Bold statement eh!
So you’ve either got a product there that’s not been developed yet, you’re thinking of developing one, or you already have one going through a new product development phase.
If you want it to succeed, you need to do more than build it.
It’s not the Field of Dreams, and just because you’ve built it, the general public won’t just reach a state of feverish excitement about a product they’ve never heard of from people they’ve never heard of. You wouldn’t just open a shop and tell no-one, would you? If you would then you can go back to licking your monitor, the grownups are talking business.
Product development, new product management, call it what you will, it’s not easy.
If you’re starting your own project (with others or on your own), you’ll need the following:-
- I’m assuming you’ve done your competitor analysis and refined your product, had your assumptions sense-checked, spoken to potential clients/end users and completed your projections based on that. Read my last article here on research.
- You’ll need developers to build your product. Get prices, do the background checks on them, including past bodies of work. Get timelines to build a Minimum Viable Product (the one you initially go to market with). If possible, work out a timeline for future development because the product you start with is rarely the one you’ll be looking at in 12 months.
- If you’re not self-funding then you’re going to need some money, it comes in really handy. You’ll have to hand over a stake in your project in return. If you don’t know where to start, don’t panic. You can use crowdfunding sites to help raise capital such as Seedrs, Kickstarter or Fundingcircle as an example. Otherwise, a partner may be able to lay out the options before you and let you know what each one will do.
- So how are people going to find your new product? This is the bit that’s so often overlooked and scares people to the extent of bowel movements. You’re likely to need 3rd party support on this as most people don’t start with millions of pieces of opted in data or a site that’s already attracting thousands of visitors per month to allow you to cross-pollinate. Some of the best affiliate networks around now offer tailored engagement programs to help you drive traffic to your page/app, and I know from first-hand experience that it won’t break the bank, and can be tailored specifically to your target audience.
- Get your timings right. You need to get the right creative (ads) out, to the right people, at the right time using the right channels. Again, the campaign you set up with your affiliate network, or your own activity is key to this. Some of it will be trial and error initially but is part of the act of refining the best channels and places for your product to be seen.
- User Experience (UX)/User Interface (UI) testing and colour psychology are another set of tools that can be used to ensure your product is doing what you intend it to do. There is a level of this that is done during development, but you can use real people to use your app prior to launch to see how they interact with it, and you can use colour psychology to reflect your brand and appeal to your end users.
If you get all of these things right, you’re more likely to succeed and given yourself the best shot possible.
If you don’t have the connections, the experience, or the know-how to get all of this stuff done, you can hire people, or team up with an organisation that can facilitate the introductions you need.
At the end of the day, your new product is your baby. You want it to be given the best shot in life to succeed. Any potential investor (internally or externally) would rather you build in the costs to give a product that shot at success than underestimate.
It shows that you’ve done your homework and it shows that you’ve left no stone unturned in trying to build a proper new product development plan/business plan. It shows that you give a flying fig that it will succeed or not and that you’re committed to its’ success.
Some people, such as ourselves, are able to provide access to all of the above. We are able to provide many services directly, as well as through chosen partners. Our development costs are cost-effective, so that leaves more room for people to engage the other partners they need to succeed.
So, no matter how large or small you are, please feel free to get in touch to give your product the best chance of success.
Hell, even if you’re an existing business and you’re struggling to compete or want an outside set of eyes on the business to innovate a new solution, it’s worth a free chat isn’t it. You can reach Kris at [email protected]