How to Go From Idea to Product

Are you someone who has plenty of ideas but you struggle to actually implement them? In this article I am going to describe how you go from having an idea to actually putting that idea into practice and creating a product.

I am sure that there are many people out there who have so many ideas but the one thing that stops them from actually doing anything with that idea is because they don’t know what to do. Having ideas can sometime be the hardest thing for people who do know what to do – so you are blessed if you can come up with ideas easily!

If you have an idea then the very first thing you need to do is to make sure that your idea,if you turned it into a product, will actually be profitable for you. You may believe that your idea is great but that isn’t actually what is important. You need to make sure that other people will think your idea is great and will actually want to buy your product.

Market research is critical if you are going to have a profitable business and therefore you need to determine exactly if your idea will work and the form that your idea will take in terms of a product.

In this article I am talking about information products – that is products that share and explain how to do things or the importance of why you need to do something in order for someone to see a specific result and achieve something.

Therefore once you have an idea and you know that people will want that information all you need to do is to put that down on a piece of paper as an outline of exactly what you will include when you package it together as a product.

Your outline is based on the steps that someone might need to take in order to achieve something or it might be what people need to know in order to achieve something.

It is far easier to create a product if you have an outline than just trying to create it from an idea in your head.

Once you have your outline on paper then you can begin to fill in and pad that outline out so that you actually create an information product.
The way that you sell that product and in what format you sell it is entirely up to you. Bear in mind that certain formats will command a higher price than others.

Top Three Solutions for Purchasing and Shipping US Products Abroad

As access to the Internet is improving and expanding exponentially around the world, more and more people are discovering the benefits of shopping online. Specifically, consumers around the globe are interested in purchasing U.S. products online and shipping internationally because they have access to a wider selection of products, better pricing, and overall, the merchandise is higher in quality.

Why are U.S. products in such demand even though many products in the U.S. are actually made in China? It’s simple. Products sold in the U.S. must meet strict regulations and manufacturing standards, whereas the same product sold in other countries, which are also shipped from China, may be of lesser quality because they don’t have to meet the same quality criteria.

Soft Nations is looking to provide solutions that will allow international eCommerce consumers to purchase products from the U.S. and have them shipped to their doorstep. The cost of international shipping, however, is often a barrier for consumers in some countries. For instance, Africa is one of the most expensive places in the world to ship to from the U.S., yet the one billion people who live on the continent are chomping at the bit to be recognized as top consumers of U.S. products. There is an obvious gap between desire to shop online and services available to underserved populations.

The top three solutions for purchasing and shipping U.S. products abroad without breaking the bank:

1. Find U.S. online shopping outlets that will ship internationally. These are a little hard to find, but sites like Soft Nations, whose primary goal is to provide goods to underserved populations is a good start. Most online shopping outlets do require the ability to pay with a credit card or PayPal account, however.

2. Sign up for a membership to MyUS.com. As a part of their membership fee, they will provide you with a U.S. shipping address so when you order from an online merchant who typically won’t ship to your location, you can have the products shipped to your U.S. address. MyUS.com will they repackage your items to a more compact and efficient shipping container and will ship the products to your doorstep at their pre-negotiated rate with DHL. Again, with this method, the consumer will need to have a credit card or PayPal account.

3. Use the Soft Nations customized shopping and shipping service. If you don’t have access to a credit card and the online merchant won’t ship to your location, you can contact a personal customer service representative who will work with you to arrive at an online shopping solution. We can accept payment through multiple methods than many online merchants won’t consider. We can also arrange to have the product went to us and we’ll ship the product to you at the price we negotiate with DHL.

Product Launch Campaigns – The Lifeblood Of The Business

Few company events are more critical than launching new products and services. Many firms just go through the motions during product launches, repeating the same worn-out formulas they’ve always used-but every product launch is an opportunity to turn a new page in your company’s history, and it can make the difference between rags and riches.

Any new product can be directed towards an existing market (a set of known prospects and customers) or it can tackle new markets. But when introducing a new product or service, you need to innovate, going beyond what has been done in the past. You have a choice-let your product get lost in the noise or launch it differently.

The introduction of a new product requires a major launch effort if your company is marketing a new family of products (or services) towards a new target market-a different class of user or a different application emphasis than you have worked with before. You might also be trying to revitalize sales of an existing product or service, which requires a launch to sustain revenues, attract new customers, and ward off competitors.

In either scenario, avoid limiting the product launch campaign to a single, big-bang event with no plan for follow-up. You are positioning the product for its life cycle. Successful product introductions are company-wide events. They must be the focus of your entire organization.

Setting the Stage for a Product Launch

Long before product launch happens, you need to spend time on pre-launch activities that build the opportunity base. This pre-launch research will provide insights on the validity of the product, the features it needs, pricing and packaging considerations, and so on. Think in terms of projected revenue (at 12 to 18 months after launch, for starters), the profits you will need to break even, and the potential return on your investment.

Front-end research and analysis is the process of gaining insight and collecting data that will shape the product launch campaign. You are not simply collecting information, but interpreting it. Avoid focusing simply on the launch – consider the product life-cycle in your planning. Chances are, the data you gather to support your launch campaign may be a year or more old by the time the actual product hits the market. In the words of the Great One – Hockey Legend Wayne Gretzky, make sure you are going where the puck will be, not where it is. Otherwise, your launch campaign may miss the mark.

Elements to research during data collection

Market-based

- Competition for your product or service
- Potential customers’ buying influences and attitudes
- Market readiness and demand for your product

Product-based

- Key applications, features and advantages (from the customer’s viewpoint)
- Service and support components your product will include
- Packaging considerations

External-based

- State of the economy – by Industry Sector, Area or Region
- Regulatory changes in your Industry
- Technological considerations (current and future)

Developing the Right Concept for Your Product

Creativity is essential to a product launch-but balance it with the sobering thought that the concept you choose will be critical to launching a product that must generate revenue. Avoid the temptation to be clever in your campaign-it could lose the audience, diminish your credibility or worse, be a source of entertainment.

A good theme for a product launch campaign focuses on the problem solved, not merely the product’s use. Just as important as choosing the right concept is selecting the right launch vehicles for your campaign. Consider media and PR, direct-response pieces, catalogs, e-mail communiqu├ęs, Web site promotions, industry guides, e-casts, and telemarketing. The vehicles you choose will depend on what works in your specific business and what your appetite and budget can tolerate.

Choosing Your Message

The essence of your whole campaign will be its message. The right message captures your audience’s attention, explains your new product or service, distinguishes it from its competition, creates action, and has the ability to perpetuate the theme of the campaign (for the product’s intended life). Themed campaigns tend to do better than product-focused ones. They can also be perpetuated for a longer life.

Your message must be expressed in the attitude, tone, and language of your intended customer. It must also speak to your product, and your product alone. Put your message through the logo test. If you can replace your company’s logo with your competitor’s logo, and the campaign message still makes sense, go back to the drawing board. Work at it until you get it right.

While You Are Waiting

While campaign materials are being produced, you can be readying your company for the formal launch. Use this time to talk to media sources, investors, and other interested parties. Create a written campaign action plan that describes key tasks you must complete, target dates for their completion, the resources you require, and how you will measure your progress.

Promote and publish early-stage successes for your new product frequently. Whenever you can demonstrate customer acceptance for the new product, it will breed confidence with your Target Audience including your internal company employees.

After the Launch

Done correctly, the work you put into developing a successful product launch will stay with your product for its entire sales life. But when the product reaches maturity, you may need to revisit this process, innovating new uses for the product, repackaging it, adding value, finding a different distribution mechanism, introducing new incentives, and so on to ensure that it continues to generate revenue.

Once you have mastered the process of a successful product launch, you can extend the marketability of any product and give it new life.

Your launch methodology can make or break you in the competitive business jungle.
Is your launch method keeping pace?

Are you confident that your upcoming launch is positioned for success?

Copyright 2007

Performance Marketing Group