Introduction

Product development strategy is the term for all actions and methods used when bringing to the market new products or modified existing products targeted to bring in new revenues and business. Unlike its name, it is not a single strategy. Rather it involves a collection of strategies, plans, and actions applied at different stages in the lifecycle of product development to introduce an ideated product into the market and sustain its growth by remaining competitive.

  1. Why is product development strategy important?
  2. What are the stages of product development?
  3. Benefits of product development strategy
  4. Product development strategies

1. Why is product development strategy important?

Product development strategy is crucial as it is based on market research and analysis to build a plan meant to sell the products. The overall strategy includes the development strategies for all phases of the product’s development. Since research always throws up newer opportunities, the product development strategy is an important step towards selecting the best products and making the best strategies to be successful in a very competitive market. Companies that have product development strategies planned can focus on the strategy and drive success without hindrances.

2. What are the stages of product development?

Whether it is a new product or a modified product brought to the market, there are 7 stages that depend on the types of product strategy and are important in product development. It is also called the ‘what is product development steps in product development’ handbook.

  • Ideation and product development: This process of idea development is the result of market research, new products brainstorming, and modifications of the existing products to make the product list and product development strategy more relevant.
  • Selection of products post-editing: In this stage, the product selection list is revisited to choose the products with the best potential for revenue earning in the market.
  • Creation of prototypes: When the product list is finalized and a product selected, the company creates the draft or prototype version of the product. The product prototype is then evaluated for its working and to ensure that there are no glitches to its being marketed.
  • Product Analysis: This is the product analysis stage in the development of the product. All possible features of the product, research on market conditions etc., are analyzed and studied to anticipate any product problems.
  • Creation of product lines: In this stage, the product is produced after considering all features and issues from the analysis and notes created so far.
  • Testing the market: Here, the product is released to a limited market or focus group to judge the market response to the product via customer feedback and marketing evaluation studies and develop a market development strategy.
  • Commercialization: This is the final stage in product development strategy wherein adjustments are made to the product development and marketing strategies before the product is commercialized and released at full-scale to the market.

3. Benefits of product development strategy

A flexible and robust product development strategy converts an idea into a successfully marketed profitable and enables it to be suitably modified to sustain being competitive in the market. It also reveals improvement areas, successful methods adoptable, techniques that work with a step-wise approach, how to implement product development strategy and experience lessons for product adjustments.

4. Product development strategies

Some strategies that ensure a product is well introduced and remains market competitive are 

  • Having flexible ideas: being flexible and innovative means being open to modifications to the product, using innovative ideas in marketing the product or being open to out-of-the-box ideas. 
  • Increasing the value of the product: This can be achieved by increasing the quantity offered or offering another smaller product with a reduced price as an incentive to buyers.
  • Modifying the existing product list: The process of modifying a product to release a better version or an upgrade is a good incentive to customers who are mindful and share information on which features to modify.
  • Trials are a big draw: Product free trials are also a great way to get consumers to try the product and are an excellent product strategy example.
  • Customize and specialize: Offering a customizable product is being mindful of customer needs and draws in customers who like personalization to suit their unique needs.
  • Create new products and package deals: Package deals provide customers with samples of all the products targeted at a customer that they may or may not have tried. Ensure new products are aligned in terms of marketing segment, use and value with the products already marketed and do not serve as impediments to other products. 
  • Discover new markets: New markets can be a geographical, demographic, new age group, multiple locations or multiple target groups.

Conclusion

Product development strategy and product development involve several stages, from ideation till the time of customers receiving the product and beyond. Hence product development strategy is not a single strategy but a collection of development strategies applicable at the various stages.

Interested to learn all about Product Management from the best minds in the industry? Check out our Product Management Course. This 6-month-long program takes place online through live instructor-led sessions. It is the only program in India that offers the ‘Bring Your Own Product (BYOP)’ feature so that learners can build their product idea into a full-blown product, and go through an entire Product Development lifecycle. Not only this, but this is the only program in India with a curriculum that conforms to the 5i Framework. Post completion, learners receive a joint certification from the Indian Institute of Management, Indore, and Jigsaw Academy. 

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