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  The development of a product is very important. There is a life cycle to product development and this is,  BIRTH/INTRODUCTION STAGE=> GROWTH STAGE=> MATURITY STAGE=> DECLINE STAGE

Birth/Introduction Stage

This is the stage of idea generation or birthing a new concept. In this stage, the product is at two levels; idea level and introduction level. The product is transformed from an idea into a physical product and it is launched into the market. Critical decisions need to be taken at this point like product name, how to package, colours etc. 
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Growth Stage

This is the most critical stage in product development. This is the stage where different marketing strategies are adopted to build brand awareness and ensure the product reaches a larger audience and is bought by potential customers. Many businesses tend to end their life cycle at this stage due to errors and irrational actions. At this stage, business experts should be sought after to gain more knowledge and information on how to properly promote the business to prevent loss or damage.

Maturity/Stability Stage

At this stage of product development, less promotional work is done. The product has gained full recognition and has lots of customers enjoying the benefits it provides. Unlike the growth stage, “the product will sell itself”. Word of mouth (WOM) advertisement will have also become popular and useful. People will recommend the products to others without being told to and the cycle of recommendation continues.

Decline Stage

No matter how good a product is, it will lose its relevance and quality at some point and when it does, the product loses customers. The product might not lose customers because of its diminishing quality but because of other rising products. It is absolutely normal for this to happen. This however doesn’t necessarily mean the end of the business. It is a vital time when heads need to come together to look for a way forward. At this stage, services of products/business analysts, developers, marketers etc, are needed. The cycle of product development continues. The product is repackaged, there is a quality increase and the product is relaunched to the market.  Engaging in effective product development requires one to be aware of and know how to manage these stages. Engaging in effective product development also requires one to, 
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  1. Understand the Demand

You have to understand how high or low the demand for such a product is in the market before proceeding to develop one. 
  1. Test Your Samples

Ensure that your sample is in a good working condition before proceeding to put it out to the world. 
  1. Create Design Adjustments

Adjust your designs to designs you have tested and confirmed are suitable for your customers. 
  1. Use the Best Materials

Quality materials always attract quality customers. Ensure that your product is made out of the best materials that there are.
  1. Have a Marketing Plan

To effectively develop a product, you need a marketing plan to aggressively push its sales in the market.
  1. Seek Customer’s Opinion

Assumptions are not enough to develop a product, customers’ reviews on how the product is and how to improve it, are important. Featured Image Source: China2West
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This article was first published on 18th April 2022

chidiogo-akaelu

Chidiogo Shalom Akaelu holds a degree in English and Literary Studies, from the University of Nigeria. She is a freelance writer, editor and founder of Loana Press, a budding online publishing outlet.


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