Small Business Marketing
Implementing a New Product
Written by Rodney Miller for Gaebler Ventures
Launching a new product? This article discusses some of the difficulties of implementing a new product, as well as how to make it a more successful process.
A struggle with many businesses is the implementation of a new type of product or even a product line.
Many customers, especially those who are loyal to certain services or brand may not be willing to try something out. So how can you easily implement these new things into the product mix and see if they are a viable product option?
One thing that may be common sense is to simply sample. Provide a sample of the service. Give five minute massages, for example, if you own a spa and have just started offering massage treatments. This obviously is somewhat effective as a marketing ploy or the fragrance companies would have gone out of business years ago.
I have been involved in a tanning salon business, and at one point we were trying to push some new types of lotion and cosmetic products that were previously not really marketed to the tanning crowd. We place free samples not only on the counter but in each room and made sure that these were pointed out by all the employees to every customer.
By the way, be sure to let your employees sample the new products first. If they don't really have an opinion on it built from experience then their sales pitch will most likely reflect that.
Offer introductory pricing too. A great bargain will get people to try something that they might not normally care for. Try selling the product at cost for one or two weeks only to gauge the sales and then you will know if you should reorder. Also try selling sample sizes if you can. For instance, in the case of a massage, if you are trying to sell one hour massages sell twenty minute sessions for a while at half price.
This gives you some type of profit while letting them feel that they are getting a special deal. People love the idea of a sale. Mark all new products as if they are on sale even if you are going to keep that price later. It's the same reason stores charge $1.99 for a product and not $2.00. Essentially they are the same but for some reason one is easier to swallow.
Just a few of my suggestions are provided here, and of course every business and every customer base will be different, so adjust your plan accordingly.
Rodney Miller is an experienced entrepreneur who likes to write about entrepreneurship. He has started numerous businesses, including a tanning salon and a landscaping company. Rodney is currently studying business management at Park University.
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