New Product Development: Identifying Product Opportunity

in Digital Marketing | by Ethan Lyon

Launching a new product can grow market share in an existing market or help break into a new one. Consider Apple’s breakthrough into the smartphone market or iAd, or Google’s Android. Before you begin implementing new products, perform market research—and consider working with a demand generation agency to make the most of this process. Based on research, you can then identify problems and take steps toward solving them. Following this straightforward path, you will find opportunities to significantly grow your market share—whether in a new market or your existing one.

1. Evaluate the current market

Research is an essential first step. Albert Einstein said, “If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it?” Let’s consider Jet Blue’s path. The airline found traditional air travel focused on profitable business travelers that sought to get from point a to point b. These customers were currently being served by airlines like Delta, so Jet Blue had to take a different approach and capture a new audience if they wanted to break through.

2. Identify the problems

After you have examined the broad scope of the market, it’s time to identify any under-served customer needs. “Knowing the market’s needs and how it is currently serviced provides you with key information that is essential in developing your product/service and marketing plan,” writes VA-Interactive. For Jet Blue, their team understood that appealing to the profitable business traveler was already done by Delta. The new airline took several steps back and saw there was a demographic not being served: the casual, young, urban flier. But how could Jet Blue capture this demographic?

3. Determine how you can solve them

At this the point you are beginning to hone-in on your market opportunity. The research and analysis has been done, now it’s time to stretch your creative thinking to solve the current market problems. “A business has to be involving, it has to be fun,” says billionaire Richard Branson, “and it has to exercise your creative instincts.” This is exactly what Jet Blue did.

The burgeoning airline understood the young, urban flier were not being served by current airlines. The Jet Blue team went to the drawing board and began brainstorming. Do they just want to get from point a to point b? No. They want an experience. Flying was no longer flying, it was jetting. Jet Blue was able to incorporate TVs into every seat, offer healthier food while keeping rates down for its cash-strapped customers. Jet Blue did their research and found an entire market of under-served travelers and captured them.

Jet Blue stretched their thinking, determined which ideas were within their capabilities, budget and most met their audience needs. The results? Cheaper flights, personal TVs for every passenger and healthy snacks. Through market evaluation, analysis and creative problem solving, you can develop a compelling product to grow your market share.

Through market evaluation, analysis, creative problem solving and even help from a brand activation agency, you can develop a compelling product to grow your market share.

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