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What is a Product Concept?
A product concept is the description of the characteristics, quality, and performance of a product at the initial stage in the product lifecycle. It is created prior to the design work and it considers market analysis, product features, customer experience, product cost, product engineering, strategic fit, etc.
It suggests how the new product will connect and optimize its presence in the target market. In general, the product concepts are based upon the idea that customers incline toward products that have top-notch quality, features, performance, and appeal. However, some of the customers favor a product that is simpler and easier to use.
The product concept is the perception that people form about a product. A product concept statement represents the vision that a business owner and his design team have while developing a product. It is a mandatory concept to give the best possible product to the customer according to their need and expectations.
A successful product concept refers to the psychological impression that individuals form about a product. This includes their view of the upsides and downsides, as well as how they accept it in comparison to alternatives in the market. How people think about a product can either help or upset its success in the marketplace. In case the target audiences have an incorrect impression of a product, companies could lose out on sales regardless of whether their product is better than the other alternatives in the market.
Importance of Product Concept
With the help of a product concept, brands can give a personality, identity, and USP to their products. It lets them add functional value and usability to their products so that the target audiences can get this advantage and at last purchase the product in the market.
It is one of the orientation strategies and marketing strategies that brands need to follow to optimize their conversions. It is as crucial for effective marketing and sales generation as other concepts like production concept, selling concept, marketing concept, and so forth. The reason having a product concept is crucial for a business is because it makes it necessary for you to satisfy the needs and wishes of target customers by delivering a top-notch product.
Apple is one of the most popular brands that work highly on product concepts to offer premium quality products. Their products are seen to be very first-rate quality with innovative features and best-rated performance.
Historical Background of Product Concept Philosophy
Earlier, during the first thirty years of the 20th century, companies used to follow the production concept of increasing supply will create more demand.
But, during the 1930s, they started confronting the issue of winning the customers, and in the process to accomplish that, they understood that the customers were ready to pay more for products that are of superior quality. This was the time when the philosophy of product concept appeared.
It follows the simple strategy of continuously working on your product for a minimal price. Companies that believed in this concept often took suggestions from their customers to work on their products and slowly product concept meaning became highly prevalent in the production world.
What is the Product Concept in Marketing?
The product concept in marketing is a way of marketing a product that promotes a product by emphasizing those features that are most important to the customers of a brand. When it comes to product concept in marketing, a product concept is about the features as well as how you can market your product to advance it well for the business.
While making a product concept, brands need to have a marketing strategy to ensure that their business would have the option to generate leads, sales, and ROI from the products. For this, they should recognize a market opportunity by thinking about any issues or problems that might influence their target customers. Whenever they have recognized the issue, then, at that point, they can continue offering possible solutions to optimize product as well as brand presence.
Types of Product Concepts
a. Convenience Concept
It refers to giving the target audiences convenience in buying a specific product. It refers to products that can be promptly purchased from your nearby stores, supermarkets, and so on.
b. Specialized Concept
It pays heed to the quality and uniqueness of the product being offered rather than focusing on cost and mass marketing practices. It involves highly specialized products that are not easily accessible in other stores. Hence, such products are of better quality makeup.
c. Brand Concept
It targets those audiences who are faithful to any specific brand. It revolves around some loyalty programs and includes products that must be purchased from the brand’s store.
Advantages of Product Concept
The notable upsides of product concepts are as follows;
a. Prefers Quality
Brands that opt for the inclusion of product concepts prefer quality instead of quantity. Their essential focus is to be quality-driven and make top-notch products with unique features and more benefits to the users.
Such a company’s products care about satisfying their target audiences. A quality-driven product solves the problems of the target customers.
b. Developing Curiosity
Product concepts are effective in creating and developing a curiosity in the minds of the potential as well as existing customers of a brand. This would compel the target audiences to crave for making a purchase to satisfy their curiosity.
Through PR, marketing, and advertising campaigns, brands and companies continue sharing updates about their feature-rich products to generate curiosity in the target market.
c. Acquiring High Margin
The effective product concept allows brands to charge a higher cost than the competitors and hence they not only get more sales but also higher margins. A product made at a low cost can be sold at higher prices due to effective branding, done through optimized product concepts.
The customers might want to pay for it. This is because of the highest quality branding that the company has made in the minds of customers. They trust that a particular brand offers better products than other competitors in the market can’t do.
Disadvantages of Product Concept
Some of the primary disadvantages of the product concept are as follows;
a. Not good for price-conscious Customers
There is a major section of the target audiences that are price-conscious. They like opting for cost-effective or cheap products even if such a product or service has the lowest quality.
Such customers care more about the price as opposed to quality. But the product concept is the best fit in such a market where customers in all actuality do think often about the quality. So, in price-sensitive markets, product concepts won’t be so successful.
b. Inclusion of Insignificant and Impractical Features
While trying to be unique, different, and innovative, many times brands go off track. They even try to include those features that are of no use and value to the customers.
So, using product concepts can lead brands to participate in the rate race of being different from the others in the market.
c. Not caring about the Interest of Consumers
In offering feature-right products and services, many companies compete with each other in the field of research and innovation.
But so many times, their innovations have nothing to do with the target audiences. So, to achieve the status of the most innovative company in their target niche, brands offer features that are of no use to the end-users.
Factors forming a Product Concept
Some of the factors that are crucial while designing a product concept for new products are-
- The idea of creating a product concept
- Having a product’s name
- Advantages of the product
- Using customer insights
- Giving reasons to customers to believe in your product
Tips to Develop a Product Concept
Brands can use various ways to design the best product concept for their business such as-
- Knowing who their target audiences are
- Doing effective market research
- Knowing whether you are selling a necessity or an emotion
- Using their imagination
Example of product concept
The products that Apple launches are seen to be very high quality with top features and excellent performance. This type of perception around the brand is created to their hard word at the product concept stage.
They have shaped up their premium quality features in such high regard that their target audiences opt for their products without even doing any market research, checking reviews, and analyzing customer feedback.
Their target audience base stays loyal to their new products and new features in the existing products.
As a worldwide fashion brand, Louis Vuitton is known for catering to the needs of luxury and premium customers.
It provides high-quality products at premium prices. Their premium appeal is also based upon the quality-driven product concept that makes them one of the most preferred choices of premium customers.
As a final observation, a product concept is useful in optimizing the quality, performance, and characteristics of the products. It also suggests that consumers favor quality over quantity. We all purchase our products after looking at all the upsides, features, and how compatible the product is with our daily life.
Product concepts are also effective in adding personality, identity, or USP to the products of a brand. The fundamental goal of the product concept is to deliver the best quality product that would satisfy the customers’ requirements and demands.
Now, how effective do you consider a product concept in making products of higher quality, optimized performance and superior characteristics?
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