How to market an innovation?
Conceiving an innovation within your company is the first part of the project. This creation, whatever its type, represents a new opportunity for your company. But how do you properly market your innovation so that it becomes the success you had planned?
Your customers and your innovation
During your research and development process, it is important to focus on a customer segment, which represents your core target. The core target represents your persona, that perfect customer, the one who will use and for whom the innovation is created.
Your persona becomes the guide for your entire innovative process.
It must therefore be at the center of your marketing strategy. You must establish the choices that will lead the customer to be directly convinced of your innovation. To do this, you must create the link between you, the company and your customer. This link will help you go beyond the increasingly reduced time-to-market.
With the advent of the Internet and omnichannel marketing, your customers and prospects find themselves at the center of your attention and that of your competitors. They are overwhelmed with offers, of different types, prices and quality. The only way to get them to choose your products and your company is to nurture their loyalty and therefore your brand image. For this, customer research is the key. You need to study your persona and determine its habits, behaviors, tastes. All these details will allow you to know them by heart and to determine the best way to seduce them to buy your innovation. An innovation, depending on its type, must first be marketed to its target audience. This is followed by further research to charm your prospects.
Knowing your target audience is not, however, the only parameter that will help you bring your innovation to success. You need to link your customer analysis with a thorough market analysis.
Launching the commercialization of your innovation is the goal, but you must not neglect the period and the date when you will finally offer your innovation for sale.
The study of trends constitutes a heavy work of monitoring which will allow you to bring out the weak signals, the fashion effects and other parameters which influence the way of consuming. This study is closely linked to consumer behavior. It will allow you to target the right moment, which will easily lead your customer and prospect to buy your innovation.
Let's take a simple example: You are a company that markets pens and have just created an ink pen guaranteed to be smudge-free. After a study of customer behavior and buying behavior, you have concluded that the best time to market your innovation is the last week of July.
This conclusion is translated by the return of the July vacationers who will start their back-to-school shopping. Thanks to these first customers, word of mouth will be able to spread among the customers and lead the Augusters who will be doing their shopping during the last weeks of August, to buy your products.
Your different studies that led to these conclusions will allow you to maximize your sales, but also the communication around your innovation.
This example shows the importance of the period chosen to commercialize your innovation and the marketing effects that can follow.
Once you have conducted your various studies and established your launch strategy, you will need to organize the sales and marketing logistics around the launch date. All these elements will help you communicate about the innovation on the day of the launch, according to your strategy.
When the innovation is launched on the market, you have to take into account the reality that the product becomes the possession of the consumer, whether he is a customer or a prospect. It is therefore important to include in your strategy a section on crisis management and bad reviews. Post-launch, as a company, branding becomes more important than your innovation. It becomes your first impression with the customer. If the innovation has a different fate than you had planned, you need to have a back-up strategy prepared, which will allow you to act accordingly, depending on the difficulties encountered.
Your innovation is at the heart of the project, but don't neglect the parameters that may seem small, but become your biggest problem. It is important to always make decisions in relation to your customers, without ever losing sight of them.