Product concept is an idea or mental image of a product that is to be developed and brought to the market. It involves understanding the market needs and demands and figuring out how to meet them in the most effective way.
The product concept involves the following:
- Identification of a need: The first step to creating a product concept is to identify a need in the market that can be fulfilled by the product. This typically involves a thorough market research to understand the needs and wants of the target group.
- Defining the product: Once the need is identified, the product concept should define the basic characteristics of the product such as its size, shape, design, and features. This involves a lot of brainstorming and creative thinking to come up with an effective solution.
- Creating a business plan: The product concept should also include a detailed business plan outlining the resources, budget and timeline required for the product development. This is important to ensure that the product can be developed and brought to the market in a cost-effective manner.
- Testing the concept: Once the product concept is defined, it should be tested to identify areas of improvement. This typically involves a survey or focus group to get feedback from potential customers.
Example of Product concept
The product concept for a new smartwatch could involve the following steps:
- Identification of a need: Conducting research to understand the current market for smartwatches and identify the features and functions that customers are looking for.
- Defining the product: Creating a product design that features a sleek and stylish look, a touchscreen display and various functions such as activity tracking, sleep monitoring, and notifications.
- Creating a business plan: Estimating the budget and timeline required for the product development and launching the product in the market.
- Testing the concept: Conducting surveys and focus groups to get feedback from potential customers and identify areas of improvement.
Overall, the product concept for a new smartwatch involves understanding the needs of the customers, designing the product, creating a business plan and testing the concept to identify areas of improvement.
When to use Product concept
Product concept should be used when there is a need identified in the market for a particular product. Once this need is identified, the product concept can be used to define the product and create a business plan for its development. It should also be used to test the concept before the product is launched in the market.
Types of Product concept
There are four main types of product concept:
- Functional concept: The functional concept focuses on the features and functions of the product and how it can provide a solution to a problem.
- Emotional concept: The emotional concept focuses on how the product can evoke certain emotions in the customers.
- Social concept: The social concept focuses on how the product can be used to create a social connection or experience between the customers.
- Experiential concept: The experiential concept focuses on how the product can be used to create a unique and enjoyable experience.
Steps of Product concept
The steps involved in developing a product concept are:
- Gain insight into the market: The first step is to gain insight into the market to understand the needs and wants of the target group. This involves carrying out a thorough market research to understand the current trends, customer preferences and competition.
- Brainstorm ideas: The next step is to brainstorm ideas to come up with a product concept that meets the needs of the target group. This typically involves a lot of creative thinking to come up with an effective solution.
- Develop a prototype: After the concept is defined, a prototype should be developed to test the concept. This involves creating a working model of the product to identify areas of improvement.
- Test the concept: The prototype should be tested to get feedback from potential customers. This typically involves a survey or focus group to understand how the product concept is perceived by the target group.
Overall, developing a product concept involves gaining insight into the market, brainstorming ideas, developing a prototype and testing the concept.
Advantages of Product concept
- Enhanced customer satisfaction: By understanding the customer needs, product concept helps create products that meet the needs of the target audience. This helps in enhancing the customer satisfaction and loyalty.
- Improved productivity: By defining the product characteristics in detail, product concept helps to save time and resources during the actual product development process. This helps to increase the productivity of the team and reduce the overall cost of the project.
- Effective marketing strategy: By understanding the customer needs and creating a product that meets their needs, product concept helps to create an effective marketing strategy. This helps to reach the target audience and increase the sales of the product.
Limitations of Product concept
The product concept is a critical step in the product development process, however it has some limitations. These include:
- Time consuming: Creating a product concept can be a time consuming process as it involves a lot of research and brainstorming to identify the best solution.
- Limited scope: The product concept typically only covers the basic features of the product and does not include the full scope of the product development process.
- Inaccurate assumptions: The assumptions made in the initial product concept may not be accurate and may need to be adjusted as the product development process progresses.
- Analysis of customer needs and wants: By understanding the customer needs and wants, a product concept can be designed to meet those needs. This typically involves gathering information on the target market and understanding their preferences.
- Prototyping and testing: Once the product concept is defined, a prototype should be developed and tested to identify areas of improvement. This allows the product to be refined and perfected according to customer needs.
- Developing a marketing strategy: A successful product concept should also include a marketing strategy to ensure that the product reaches the target market. This typically involves creating a launch plan, pricing strategy and communication plan.
- Shocker, A. D., & Srinivasan, V. (1979). Multiattribute approaches for product concept evaluation and generation: A critical review. Journal of Marketing Research, 16(2), 159-180.
- Kankainen, A. (2003, June). Ucpcd: user-centered product concept design. In Proceedings of the 2003 conference on Designing for user experiences (pp. 1-13).