Gaining Trend of Outsourced Product Development

The stiff business environment expects companies to expand their market share by offering new web products to the targeted market. In order to expand the market, the businesses are making the best use of advanced technology to develop web solutions that can engage maximum visitors towards their business.

Most of the businesses plan out similar strategies but unfortunately only few of them succeed in capturing a wider market. The reason may be shorter product lifecycles, better and advanced use of technology, the right skills to accomplish the work and necessary infrastructure to complete the solution.

While every company aims to enhance their potential without increasing their spending limit, the trend to outsource product development has become very popular. It not only helps in saving money but also helps to collaborate with global talent and advanced technologies. The faster means of communication is also successful in bridging the gap due to time difference between two countries. Such outsourced product development companies are aware of the importance of reducing time to market so that the product can be launched exactly the time when there is a huge demand for it and then capture a wider market so as to sustain the position in the industry.

When businesses outsource their development requirements, they get the following advantages without hiring additional man-power or setting up the department:

1. Makes the development process cost-efficient

2. Reduce level of risks after launching it in the market

3. Provides access to advanced technology

4. Highly skilled web developers

When such tedious development processes is taken care of by experts, the business owner can concentrate more on core business areas. Those businesses that have set-up the entire development department but still have failed to achieve the desired results can understand the importance of outsourcing better. However, if you are new in this field, it is not recommended to experience the same when you already have a better option in your hand.

Look for the outsourced development firm that has experience, capability and expertise to accomplish the tasks as per your expectations. Most of the companies will look like same but reviewing their previous work and direct interaction with developers will help you gain more clarity about the company you will be working with. So, don’t hesitate in short listing down the options and then talk one-by-one to compare the development firms and make the best deal for your business.

Is Your Product Packaging Newsworthy?

I see hundreds of releases on product packaging every week. For the most part I read the headline and say to myself “who cares.” That in itself is very telling because I am a packaging junkie and I’ll read almost anything that has to do with packaging.

Recently, mainstream media coverage of the packaging industry has been more in-depth than usual. I see dozens of articles about packaging each week. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the news articles deal with negative perceptions of packaging and its influence on society. From bottle water to excess packaging the packaging industry is getting a bad “wrap.” You can help change all that by portraying your product packaging in a positive manner.

So how can you get your product seen by the media in a more favorable light? Make sure that your packaging is connected to one of the more popular news trends or consider what the media will be covering outside of the obvious “breaking” news items unless of course you have a product that can “connect” to the most current story.

Start thinking about your product and how it can connect with the media coverage. A few examples of topics the media will be covering in the future include:

· Any thing to do with diets, weight loss or healthy eating.

This topic perennially becomes newsworthy as the holiday season approaches. This topic also offers opportunities for coverage in niche publications too, such as woman-oriented or fitness publications.

· Products that are geared around breast cancer or the Fight For The Cure.

The media is giving more and more coverage to this topic every year. Pink packaging abounds. But even if your packaging isn’t pink you can still piggyback of the media spin.

· Products that are marketed to or designed for the 50+ generation.

The “boomers” topic is getting substantial media play in virtually every type of publication. If you are marketing in this space, contact a few publications and find out what they will be covering in the next issue.

· Look for media spin on anything to do with the environment, recycled materials and bio-based materials.

The environment is hot right now, so this topic is definitely worth getting excited about. I just judged a brand new packaging competition for the Produce Marketing Association and one of the biggest categories was sustainable or environmentally friendly materials. If I was the winner of that category I’d be all over the media with my product packaging.

· Seasonal holiday innovative packaging.

Not your old holiday standbys but something really unique and creative. I always recommend thinking about secondary uses for your product packaging. The holidays are a great time for “keepsake” product packaging

· Investigate a pitch less commonplace to the media.

For example, recently I read about deli labels featuring CBS’s new prime-time lineup are the network’s latest attention-grabbing marketing plan. What a great concept. I’d be using this idea for every holiday promotion.

By tying your product into a hot topic or trend, you can help counteract negative publicity about the industry such as the upcoming Consumer Reports “Oyster Awards” articles which condemn product packaging every Christmas holiday. So, keep your eyes on the look out for ways and opportunities that will paint your product packaging to the media in a favorable light and not portrayed as too much, excess or over packaged.

Read my weekly newsletter Packaging News You Can Use too. Each week I pick an issue that is either getting media coverage or will be in the near future. Look at me as your prognosticator or forecaster.

5 Things That Are Wrong With Your Product’s Business Plan

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, business plans are a part of every product manager’s life. They should be a part of every company’s product development definition. Because we can’t do it all by ourselves, we need to make use of funding and resources from the company. In order to get what we need, the company insists that we tell them what we’re going to be doing. That’s where the product business case comes in. However, no matter how much time and effort you put into creating one of these things, it will all be for naught if you are making the following 5 mistakes.

5 Business Plan Mistakes That Product Mangers Make

It’s not easy to write a good business plan. Where product managers seem to fall down is when they spend their time writing a business plan that they would like to read – not one that the rest of the company wants to read. If you want to be able to add this skill to your product manager resume, then you’re going to have to become better at doing it. Here are 5 mistakes that we product managers should be careful to avoid when we’re creating our next business plan:

  1. What Problem?: I love technology and I’m sure that you love technology. If you spend your business case writing about the fantastic technology that your product will use and you don’t discuss the customer problem that it will solve, then you’ll be missing the point. A business plan needs to lay out a clearly defined problem and it needs to identify which customer group has that problem.
  2. It’s A Big Market: Often Product Managers just end up saying that the market that they are going after is huge and even if the product ends up just capturing a little bit of it, they’ll do fine. The classic case in the past few years has been products that you want to sell in China – there’s so many people there that there’s no way that my product can fail! The problem with this approach is that it’s actually very hard to make customers aware of your product and then to get your product to them. You may not be able to capture even that small slice of a big market.
  3. Excel Magic: Just because your product is a dog, doesn’t mean that you can’t create fantastic Excel spreadsheet that show just how much money it’s going to make! Look, if the product isn’t going to fly, no amount of financial smoke and mirrors is going hide this fact, so don’t even try.
  4. Dream Team: No product management team has all of the skills that are going to be required to make the product successful. Every team has gaps and your business plan needs to be honest about this. You’ll eventually have to do some work and fill in the gaps. You need to let everyone know that this is a task that you know that you’ll have to do.
  5. No Problems Here: Any business plan that is too optimistic is instantly suspect. Launching and managing a product is hard, there will always be challenges. When you are creating your business plan you need to be upfront about the issues that you are going to be facing. The folks who will be reading your plan will be able to guess some of them and so you may as well let them know that you know.

What All Of This Means For You

In order to get the funding, staffing, and resources that you are going to need in order for your product to be a success, you are going to have to write a business plan. This skill should be a part of every product manager job description. This is how you are going to tell the rest of the company just exactly what you think that you can accomplish with what they give you.

The problem with creating a business plan is that it is all too easy to do it incorrectly. Simple mistakes like talking about technology, not the problem or assuming that you’ll certainly be able to grab at least a portion of a very large market are rookie business plan mistakes that no product manager should make.

Take the time to create a well thought-out business plan. After you’ve created it, sit back and take a careful look at it and see it through the eyes of someone who isn’t so close to your product. By doing this you’ll catch the issues that could delay you’re getting the resources that its going to take in order for your product to be a success.