The Manager's View provides solutions and advice based on management and marketing principles that are used by GWR Research (www.gwrresearch.com). Many of the posts are related to or are taken from the author's books "The Manager's Guide to Building a Successful Business" and "Developing Successful Marketing Strategies". More information on the books is available at Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com or Businessexpertpress.com
Sunday, December 16, 2012
Want To Find a New Product For A Business? Here's How.
Creating A New Business Idea
How do you identify market needs? How do people come up with
ideas that people don’t know they need until they see them?
The simple truth is the need is there and the job the new
product will perform is one that needs to be done and may be getting done but
not very efficiently.
So is there an exercise that can identify jobs that need to
be done more efficiently or begin being done?
Here is a process that works. Go through this example and see if it helps you develop a new product or business.
Let’s pick an
ordinary person that is going on a business trip. Here is a list of things
that will need to be done:
Prepare for meetings
Make reservations for hotels, cars, restaurants, air travel,
Travel to and from destination
Pack clothing etc. for trip
Now break down any
one of these categories to activities. Let’s pick Pack Clothing for trip:
Lay out clothes for each day/activity
Layout toiletries and personal items for each day
Fold clothes to fit suitcase
Pack suitcase with clothing and personal items.
Unpack at destination
Keep soiled clothing separate from clean clothing
Repack for return trip.
Unpack at home
Rehang fresh clothing
Launder soiled clothing
Now let’s pick an
activity that might lead to an innovative product.
Let’s pick “Fold clothes to fit Suitcase”
There are numerous devices that are designed to help keep
clothes neat in a suitcase. Mostly they don’t work. So let’s say we’ll create a
device that will allow someone to fit clothes in a suitcase and keep them neat
First we might
describe the worst outcomes of people trying to fit clothes into a suitcase;
Suitcase is flexible and therefore will not hold clothing’s
Clothing is not uniform and won’t fit evenly into a suitcase
Clothing get’s wrinkled and must be pressed
Device to keep clothes neat actually creates unwanted
creases or wrinkles
If suitcase is damaged or gets wet there is high probability
clothing will be affected
Now let’s create the
new product by addressing the possible bad outcomes.
We could create separate packaging to put clothing in before putting them in a
We could develop packaging that fits together in uniform fashion like building
blocks to keep clothes in place during travel. One type of container for shirts, one for slacks etc.
This packaging could allow clothing to be fitted on forms to hold
clothing’s shape and prevent wrinkles.
This packaging would be water tight and durable to protect clothing
even if suitcase is damaged.
This particular example was created in about 30 minutes. With a group it might take longer because there will be more innovative thinking and more solutions that are better.
This process can be used for any activity and it can be used for businesses in any industry.