Square One Marketing

How to check if your product is marketable.

If you have a product or service to sell and no one knows it, you won’t be a success. Simple, right? A lot of people think that if you have a great product, success will just happen. It doesn’t. You must first establish that you have a great product or service to sell. To be sure, you need to have done your homework.

The first test is whether people will want your product. We have talked about doing market research and discussing your ideas with family and friends, either formally or by holding an informal focus group. It is important.

If you find that no one is interested in what you have to sell, don’t think they are simply being negative. They are representative of your market. If they are not interested, you must either improve your product or scrap it. This is how you determine if you even have a market for what you want to sell.

I have always tried to improve people’s lives with my product ideas. (The first microwave cookware, form-fitted Pampers with sticky tabs, the squeezable catsup bottle, among others.)

To gauge if your product will enhance people’s lives in any way, try to think how people in different parts of the country would use it; put yourself in their place, so to speak. Look at your product from many different perspectives.

Then if you realistically don’t see any benefit in using your product or service, other people won’t either. It would be very hard to sell or license that product to a company looking to make a profit.

Try to have a product or service that is unique, but not so far out that no one will want it. Your product should have at least one characteristic that sets it apart from others. You wouldn’t want to be the twelfth new oatmeal cookie on the shelf. But you would want to be the first oatmeal cookie in a special new package or with a special new flavor.

It helps to develop a product or service for an existing market. Take a specific industry in which a lot of people work: you might find a way to improve a utensil, tool, instrument, or other product they use on a daily basis. There is already a market for that tool and an improved one would have a good chance of making it in the eyes of a manufacturer with a bottom line to think of.

Another area for products is one that is lacking: a special product for a special group, called a niche market. It would be a product unique to a certain group, but an existing market that needs to be covered by that product or service. Many niche market systems have popped into place since the growth of the Internet. For instance, when people started shopping on the Internet, someone developed a virtual shopping cart.

Next time we will talk about marketing, and how to get the word out to the world that your product is ready to sell.

Article – Copyright 2002 Stanley I. Mason. Syndicated by Paradigm News, Inc.

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