>75% of B2B businesses say they will launch a ‘major’ new product in the next 18 months. Of those, less than half can answer these three basic questions:

    1. What are the unique characteristics, behaviors and values of the target segment for your product launch?
    2. How is your launch offer different AND better in the eyes of your target segment?
    3. How will you capture the value of your new offer?

    If your business is counting on new product launches to meet growth, profit and innovation goals, work with a multifunctional team to answer those questions. Here’s how:

    First, test the fit of the new product with your current segmentation. How closely do the new product’s benefits align with each segment’s Critical Purchase Criteria (CPCs)? Refresh the persona for the target segment and ensure that it is well communicated. It is the “Wanted Poster” for the launch. Incorporate segment-specific targeting into your CRM system so that Sales can find the exact targets for the launch.

    Second, develop a Competitive Assessment for the target segment, comparing the new product’s performance to the current product and available alternatives. Test the scoring with the customers in the target segment to ensure it is specific to their perceptions.

    In the attached example, the new product delivers superior dry strength and the ability to use >50% post-consumer recycle; however, machine operability is an issue and will need to be addressed before the product launch. Keep launch positioning concise and clear. In this case, the “best dry strength with PCR >50%” is simple and clear.

    Third, every new product launch should have an associated Value Map. Be sure to consider existing in-kind and not in-kind competitive offers. In this example, the existing offers are competing in a well defined ‘fair value corridor’. Given the relative performance of the new offer, it should command a premium price, ~15% greater than the incumbent product.

    Finally, form your product launch team and begin planning now! Too many product launch teams operate in reactive mode. The analyses above take time to be iterated and develop the associated implications.

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    For more information about building compelling New Product Launches, please fill out the information below. A Market Edge consultant will be in contact with you shortly.

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