The Ultimate Challenge: Brining a New Product to Market

In 2012, the letters “BB” became inseparable in many consumers’ minds with the word “cream”. BB Cream, merges both the benefits of foundation and skincare, was the latest new cosmetic product to take the North American market by storm in 2012. At the end of 2012 BB Cream sales reached $36 million in North America, compared to $2 million dollars in 2011. Large corporations such as Revlon, MAC, and Maybelline launched their products after the arrival of the first creams in the Asian-Pacific market. As a result of its popularity more products offering combination solutions entered the market – and new category of hybrid skincare was born. The story of BB Cream is a perfect example of how proper marketing of a new product can help jump start a new product category and create a product success. Before putting a new product to market – there are key concepts marketers need to know and abide by.

My weapon of choice is Bobbi Brown BB Cream
My weapon of choice is Bobbi Brown BB Cream

New Product Categories to Watch

The research firm Nielson, in 2013 released a study on consumers and their responses to new product categories. In this study, 58 countries were surveyed online to find out what markets are the key drivers for new products. It was found that there are five key product categories that have the most success introducing a new product – food/beverage, clothing/apparel, personal hygiene, household cleaning, and oral care. Each of these market verticals had four or more new products purchased by a consumer in the last six months.  Nielson also found that consumers’ responsiveness to new products is also culturally based. For example, Asia-Pacific respondents have the highest likelihood of purchasing new products within these top categories than any other nationality but Latin America respondents are more actively seeking out new products. It was also found that certain product categories resonate more within different countries, such as in the Middle East/Africa where the number one product category by a 29% margin was in cosmetics rather than food/beverage.

Consumer Responses to Different Media

One of the most important aspects of launching a new product is getting consumers to hear about it then use it. Nielson found that 72% of new product awareness comes from the traditional method of in store discovery. Marketers can use this information to their advantage by establishing interactive displays for new products.

Another important method that still is proving affective for some products is TV ads and 59% of those surveyed found a new product through television. However, the way in which most consumers found a new product was through word of mouth, particularly via social media, mobile and the internet. Social media and mobile is becoming an increasingly more important aspect to a marketer’s campaign and for new products this step must not be ignored.

New Product Frame work

When a new product is ready to go to market, it is an exciting time but also leaves many marketers scratching their heads on how to successfully market the product. The key to marketing a new product lies in a holistic approach of multi-media campaign. The first step is to understand whether or not the product is able to fulfill an unmet need of the consumer. Products that fulfill an unmet need for a consumer are more likely to be successful at market than those that do not. Nielson recommends making campaign focus around how the product can meet the need/opportunity rather than the features of a product.

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