If you've never worked with a new product development consulting services provider, you might be wondering what the basics of the process are. Here are four aspects of the process you'll want to learn more about.
Commercializing an Idea
One of the first things a new product development consulting professional has to do is figure out how an idea will become commercial. Not all ideas are ready to be products, and that means a consultant may have to conduct research and analysis. This will help you understand what the market is likely to be for products that leverage your idea.
Intellectual Property Protection
Another critical area of initial research covers intellectual property protections. Particularly, you want to verify that there aren't any patents, trademarks, or copyrights that might inhibit your ability to bring a product to market. Likewise, you'll want to confirm that it's legally possible to defend your IP.
Design, Engineering, and Prototyping
Even if you already have a very well-conceived physical object, that's not necessarily a market-ready product. As an idea becomes a product, the design may need to integrate branding and customer needs.
For example, every car company tries to create a distinct "face" for each generation of its vehicles. If you walk around a parking lot, you'll see that most of the Fords look like other Fords and the Hyundais look like other Hyundais. This is intentional, and it's a result of those companies' product development processes.
A development process usually works in several iterations through design, engineering, and prototyping. When a new car goes into development, someone will drawings and models. Engineers will then use variants of the models to do things like wind tunnel testing. A full-size prototype will then go through its paces in the real world. As the company gets feedback, learned lessons will go back into the cycle to improve the product.
Branding, Marketing, and Launching
As the final prototype gets closer to approval, the process will start to focus on building a brand. This includes all kinds of considerations, such as whether the product is a luxury brand or something for budget-conscious consumers. Similar branding concerns include fun versus stability, futuristic versus traditional, urban versus rustic, and so on.
With market research and branding well underway, the new product development consulting team will start creating a marketing campaign. A fun and futuristic product, for example, might have a marketing package that uses lots of colors and music.
As marketing comes together, you'll prepare for the product launch. The consultants will contact industry press members, schedule events, and work with influencers to generate buzz.