New product development process
As the marketing executive of the new merchandise that produces lightweight, easy-to-store bike with safety features that combines the speed of a road bike and the sturdiness of a mountain bike, I believe that the unique features of this product are not adequate determinists of its success. Some of the critical information that test marketing will provide to ensure a successful product launching include:
Appropriate product pricing
Customer specifications and preferences
Forecast on possible sales volume to avoid mismatch between supply and demand
Available room for innovation
The match between the product and market needs
Performance of the product amongst perfect substitutes
New product development strategy
Through test marketing, I will be more able to assess competitive pricing compared to if I were to use simulated tests (Jayachandran 212). Based on the identified market results, I will advise the firm management on the estimated market need for the bicycle to ensure that eventual production in large scale will meet demands.
Despite the merits of pre-test marketing, I will proceed with moderation to avoid common challenges associated with it such as cost burdens resulting from the need to give out free samples, the cost of intensive sensitization and branding (Jayachandran 212). Test marketing also requires a long time compared to the use of pre-market test results. It also presents various risks such as providing an advantage to competitors who may innovate a similar product of higher quality based on the pre-established tests.
In conclusion, test marketing will provide me with the critical information about pertinent elements of our new bicycle marketing mix including the bicycle itself, the necessary promotional message and media spend, available distribution channel and appropriate pricing.
Jayachandran, S. Marketing Management Text and Cases. New-Delhi: Excel Books, 2004. Print.