"In the world we live in, somewhere between 80 percent and 95 percent of new product introductions fail. It’s not that hard to postulate that you must do virtually everything right to successfully launch new products. Therefore, intelligent new product marketers arm themselves with the discipline to not only find and evaluate key Insights, but to effectively execute all the elements to both deliver and communicate these Insights in introducing compelling new products."
AcuPOLL's client list includes Consumer Goods, Telecom/Electronics, Durables, Financial Services, Foods, Beverages, Confections, Pharmaceuticals, Insurance, Cinema, and Advertising/Marketing Consultants. Their offerings include product testing, promotions, packages, and logos.
The 80-95 percent failure numbers are the highest that I have seen printed. My thanks to Jack Gordon for having the courage to print the results of AcuPOLL's data. In addition, Gordon didn't just report the bad news. He was willing to share insights on how to improve success rates.
The online version of the article does not include the graphic in the printed version of the magazine. Gordon's graphic of the new product development cycle has the following components:
- The New Product Development Cycle occupies the hub position in the graphic
- There are 10 spokes that connect to the hub. The arrangement of the 10 items conveys a "cycle" idea. The 10 items are:
- Consumer (the source of insights)
- Finding Insight
- Insight Screening
- Concept Development
- Concept Optimizer/Volumetrics
- Product Development
- Product Testing
- Ad and Package Briefs
- Advertisement/Package Promotion Optimizer
Gordon's holistic insight that teams "must do virtually everything right to successfully launch new products" challenges the claims of various "magic bullet" solutions. The impact of adding one great item to your new product development mix, such as better branding, may not be enough to compensate for doing a substandard job on another critical item.
There are many "flavor of the month" promises on how to have a more successful launch. One of the most used words in 2006 product development conferences was "innovation." Gordon stresses going back to the basics - what was the customer insight that started the process? Gordon provides a stern warning - Don't mess up anything.
I recommend all seven articles in the series. The other six articles are:
Finding Insights, May 2006
Insight Identification, June 2006
Concept Development and Evaluation, July 2006
Product Development: Delivering the Insight, August 2006
"To be successful in this stage it is necessary to maintain sight of the original (insight). However, it’s not uncommon that the product development and manufacturing departments are only given the end benefit as their target — not the key Insight that the benefit was derived from. Failure to successfully deliver on the Insight will ultimately cause the final product to fail to reach its full potential, particularly if it involves the creation of a new category."
Want Advertising That Works? Make Insight the Hero, October 2006
Packaging: Everyday Advertising of Insight, November 2006
Update January 2013: These articles are no longer available online at the original links