10 things to know about Product Research
According to Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen, each year, more than 30,000 new consumer products are launched, and 95% of them fail.
With the competition rising among the product companies, it becomes crucial for Product Managers to scrutinize and devote time to research and find the exact gap or the opportunity to target the customers.
Product Research is an essential aspect of the product development cycle where managers determine the viability and feasibility of the new idea or the feature. This process begins with investigating the market to see if similar products exist or not.
While conducting product research, PMs must consider various steps to ensure their efforts are well worth it. Let's look at the top 10 things every Product Manager should know while conducting research.
1. Conduct research on in-demand products
Product Managers need to ensure that the research is conducted on high-demand goods. While working on the product concept, managers should also check the current market for inspiration.
They can look at the most popular hashtags, pins, and comments on Pinterest and Amazon's best-selling goods. It is crucial to keep in mind to limit the search to items and product categories similar to their products.
2. Read product reviews and case studies
Customer reviews are a gold mine of knowledge about what people like and dislike. The user base frequently describes their pain points and changes in the reviews and comments section.
This is an excellent opportunity for Product Managers to read reviews and case studies on similar products.
This is one of the best channels to know the market gaps, opportunities, or prospective difficulties and fix them by reading reviews and case studies.
3. Test the product in a Focus Group
Testing a product within a Focus Group is a qualitative approach to gain an in-depth insight into the feedback from the target market. Product Managers can hire people similar to their user base and get their products tested.
Asking various questions about the product and its features helps them gain insight. Product Managers can also present a prototype, increasing the feedback's value and validity.
4. Do not overlook Product Marketing
It's critical to have a strong product, and knowing how to price it is vital, but Product Managers also need to consider product positioning and the marketing plan. It's also a good idea to look into the competitors and get answers to various questions.
- Where do people get ideas for the things they want to buy? What strategy did they use to promote their product?
- Is their plan working?
- What could you do to make it better?
- Which social media sites and communication methods do you prefer?
- What stores do you frequent?
The Product marketing approach should speak the target audience's language and resonate with them.
5. Perform a soft launch
Soft launches and test marketing allow Product Managers to predict sales and test the product. If the trial fails, Managers and Product Designers can change the product before investing additional money in its production and promotion.
Creating a simple landing page for the products helps test demand with a pay-per-click campaign. Subscriber forms can be rotated, explaining the product launch. Interested users fill up the forms, which helps generate leads for the business.
6. Understand that it is a never ending process
Product Research is a never-ending process. Product Managers need to continue to solicit client feedback, measure metrics like repeat sales, and evaluate the efficacy of the marketing activities.
Managers must watch the competition and any developing industry trends or techniques.
7. Employ Product Engineers
Involving independent specialists is another effective strategy that Product Managers can use. Product Engineers are available on a contract basis, and they assess the design and test prototypes to guarantee the product's high quality, feasibility, and viability.
Having in-depth knowledge of the product market, they also help analyze the market data, develop design concepts, and oversee its manufacturer.
8. Use Quora
Quora is a goldmine where experts from various industries share their experiences. Through Quora Marketing, Product Managers and Marketers can promote and spread awareness about their companies.
Product Managers can utilize Quora and other forums like Reddit to gather feedback and opinions about the new product or the feature that managers are trying to rollout. Through platforms like Quora, managers can get various suggestions and implement them in their product design.
9. Perform data collection and analysis
Collecting data and choosing the correct method is crucial for every Product Manager's data collection method. This helps analyze the patterns or the current market trends affecting the target market.
While performing product research, data and analysis are ongoing processes at all stages. After conducting thorough research before introducing the latest product/feature, the Product Manager must continue collecting consumer feedback and analyzing the data. This data collection will also help evaluate the efficacy of the marketing activities for future campaigns.
10. Make no assumptions
Allowing assumptions into the equation is one of the most hazardous traps a product researcher may fall into. It's easy to spot patterns and make snap judgments without digging further into why specific trends occur.
Hence, Product Managers should use numbers, research, feedback, and trends to make decisions, not untested assumptions.
To know it all!
Product research is more than just sending out a poll and compiling the results into a report. It helps bring data that must be reviewed and combined into written and visual reports that can adequately highlight trends, demographics, and opportunities.
It's a crucial component of the product development cycle, starting with the right questions.
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