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7 Steps to Commercial Success for Your New Product

The first point any business or budding inventor needs to check is that their idea for a new product or service is designed to be a marketable product – as you can make anything, but only marketable products will sell! Here are seven steps which, in our experience, you need to consider to ensure you have a commercially viable offering and the greatest chance of financial returns.

1) Know your unique selling point (your USP)
It may seem obvious but many people get this wrong or simply do not give it sufficient thought. Often what they see is different to what their customer sees. It is important to know the advantages of your product from your customer’s perspective. As well as knowing your unique selling point, you need to be able pitch it to a potential customer, quickly and clearly. Often referred to as the ‘elevator pitch’, you need to refine whatever you say to describe your idea in an accurate, concise and compelling way. It needs to engage a potential customer – or potential investor – and compel them to want to know more. When Sony started getting into electronics in the early 50′s the head of engineering said that he would ‘develop a radio that can fit in your pocket’. At the time, when radios were the size of cabinets, this was a compelling story and a great USP.

2) Know your market
People often think of an idea and a design that is something that suits them, or solves a personal issue. They believe that the fact they, or their family and friends, like it and need it means there is a market for it. But to assess whether a market genuinely exists, you first need to ensure you have clearly identified exactly who your customer and end-user is and how they will use your product. Market profiling and competitor analysis are essential here. As an example, we work with many different companies who plan to sell to the children’s toys, games and lifestyle sector. What they need to be aware of is what children are looking for. They also need to have a scale reference to a young end-user, in order to get the size right.

3) Know how big your market is
If only we received a pound for every time we heard the phrase “everyone will want one… ” This, I am afraid, cannot be true. Not everyone will, or can, buy your product or service. Knowing clearly who your target customer/end-user is will enable you to estimate the actual size of your potential market. Competitor analysis will then help you to understand how competitive the market is and how well other company’s products are selling. From this you can calculate a market penetration figure – ie the % of the market you can reasonably expect to achieve, provided your product/service is competitive. This can be translated into how many actual units you might be able to sell.

Bear in mind that this process is more of an art than a science and delivers scale rather than precise numbers. However, a number of educated and defendable guesses that deliver a number is better than no number at all! It will require some digging and cross-checking from different sources and a fair degree of estimation and guesswork. Much of the information you need can be found on the web or through reliable sources, such as the British Library. We suggest you identify a best, worst and most likely figure that you can substantiate. You can then refine your numbers progressively over time.

4) Know how your customer will buy your product
Make sure you know how your customer will find and purchase your product or service. For example, is it a direct sale? Or do you need an intermediate, such as a retailer or distributor? Do these distributors use agents and do these retailers buy from businesses like yours? The longer the chain between you and your end-user is, the lower your costs and larger the profit margins need to be. Researching your competitors will help you greatly here and you can watch and learn from them. You may even be able to see an innovative step they are missing and such a step could well end up being your key USP.

5) Know how everyone in the chain will learn about your product
Promotion and branding for your new product/service needs to be considered early on. As product designers, and having developed intellectual property concepts for the entertainment industry, we know that the essence of a design concept typically forms the foundation of any promotional and branding activities. It is common for a branding company to make a brand fit an existing product, but this is tough and can be hit-and-miss. It is far easier and more effective to consider branding and promotion at the beginning of a project, rather than at the end, and to let the two aspects develop together.

6) Know how much your customer will pay
How much will you customer pay for your product/service and so how much should it cost you to supply it? Addressing the earlier points should enable you to answer this question quite easily. We work on the principle you can make anything but only marketable products sell. So not only do you have to know what your product or service will sell for, but then what it will cost to make and deliver, whilst still enabling everyone in the chain to make the money they need to. As an example, a TV advertised product sold on the High Street should cost around a seventh of its retail price to manufacture.

7) Know that all these points are interdependent
All of the answers to the above points are interdependent and so changing one means you have to re-evaluate the rest. As an illustration, you cannot just raise the price of something without re-considering the amount and type of promotion you undertake and the quantity of product you can reasonably expect to sell.

Affiliate Marketing – Easy Product Promotion With Press Releases

Looking for a new way to promote affiliate products? You can make more money if you sell products which are already selling well, because you know there is a market. However once the product is popular, there are thousands of other affiliates who are promoting the killer product. What if you could leapfrog the efforts of all those others, and make more sales easily?

Clever affiliate promoters use press releases. The big benefit of the press releases in the online world is that a press release gets you both wide distribution and lots of backlinks. Those backlinks will go on promoting your affiliate products for years to come.

Should you pay for your press release distribution? I’m often asked this question, and the short answer is yes. Those sites which charge you to distribute your press releases have a high Google PageRank, and their links seem to stick. Unfortunately free press release sites just don’t perform as well.

1. Press Releases Get Links Fast

Online press releases communicate directly with a product’s buyers. You’re not trying to get media attention, you’re trying to get links and traffic to the product sales page. The more traffic you send to the page, the more sales you will make.

It’s important to understand that online press releases have a long-term effect. They’re not instant affiliate marketing. As your traffic increases, so will the number of sales. Look for a steady trickle of sales over the months and years, rather than an instant flood of sales.

Your main aim with press releases is to get links to your own sites, so that you can send more traffic to affiliate sales pages.

2. Create a Blog or a Website to Use in Conjunction With Press Releases

Although you can send your press release traffic directly to a product sales page, this isn’t a good idea. Remember what I said about the effect of press releases being long-term? Your press releases can send you traffic for years to come. Therefore you should be sending your traffic to your own online properties — your own blogs and websites.

The affiliate products you market will change over time, and sometimes very quickly. If a product isn’t selling for you, you’ll drop it.

You may only market a product for a month or two, and then decide to promote something else in that area. If you’re still sending traffic via press release to a product sales page when you stop promoting the product, you’re wasting a lot of traffic and are not earning the money that you should be earning.

Therefore, create your own pre-sales pages on your own sites and blogs, which you can reference in your press releases. You can change those pre-sales pages very quickly if you change the affiliate products you’re marketing.

A Unique Way to Promote Your Brand With Promotional Stress Balls

Have you been trying to come up with new and innovative ideas to advertise your company or its products and services? Have you ever planned to offer something to your associates, customers or employees? If yes, then it is recommended to accept promotional stress balls as they are considered as the most cost effective way to please people associated with your business or company. Available in a number of colors, shapes, sizes and designs, these stress balls are primarily stress relievers that can provide relaxation and peace of mind to receivers.

Advertising, of late, plays a crucial role in increasing brand awareness of products and services. Companies, small, medium and big spend a considerable amount of money in promoting their products, services or solutions. But the advertisement broadcasted and printed on electronic media and print media respectively is getting costlier day by day, forcing companies to seek for an alternative option for brand promotion. They consider promotional items as cost effective and handy and are available across the globe. Most frequently used promotional products include promotional stress balls, promotional pens, promotional umbrellas, promotional coasters and so on.

While buying promotional products, there are some points you need to keep in mind. Buy a product that has ample empty space to imprint some important pieces of information such as company’s name, address, logo, contact details and so on. Imprinted promotional items help your company to get popular among people. If you are looking for elegant and high quality products at pocket friendly rates, it would be ideal for you to shop from a reliable online gift store.

Alike other marketing products, promotional stress balls are appreciated by people from all over the world. Businesses today distribute these items not only to their existing customers, but also offer them to people attending in their tradeshows, seminars, meeting and other promotional fairs. In fact, their sole purpose is get their brands recognised widely as well as woo both existing and prospective clients. Undoubtedly, there is a steep rise in demand for promotional items and to meet the demand innumerable online promotional gifts stores have come up with a wide range of products.

A simple search through the internet will enable you come across a number of online stores selling products at pocket friendly rates along with free shipment facility. This ensures that your order gets home delivered within the least possible time. If you are seeking huge discount, then it is advised to order in bulk. Online stores offer huge discounts to customers who order in bulk. So, don’t waste your time any more!