In marketing, the premise of product concept is consumers will buy the product that provides the most features. Though it is of great importance but focusing excessively on adding features sometimes causes marketing myopia. It’s like looking in the mirror rather than through the window.
What is Product Concept?
The product concept holds that consumers will favor products that offer the most quality, performance, and innovative features.
Product concept is a mandatory concept in order to give the best possible product to the customer as per the demand and expectation.
A product is not complete in itself and requires other factors of business like marketing, distribution, sales, service, etc. to be successful.
Product concept relies completely on the superiority and functional value of the product being sold to the customer and assumes that the customer would also demand and buy the product because of its value for the money offered.
Companies / Marketers focusing on this concept concentrate on making superior products and improving them over time.
They assume that buyers admire well-made products and can appraise quality and performance.
Origin and History
In the first thirty years of the 20th century, most manufacturers and industrialists were following the production concept of more supply creates demand. In the 1930s, manufacturers were facing the challenge of winning customers.
With the passage of time, they realized that the customers were willing to pay more for better products. That’s how the product concept came into existence.
The product concept follows the simple formula of continuously improving your product at a low cost.
The followers of this concept often take suggestions from their customers to improve their products.
Most importantly, they do not compare their improved product changes with their competitors.
Sometimes they prefer and love the quality of their product so much that and start to behave idealistically.
However, these companies are sometimes caught up in a love affair with their product and do not realize what the market needs.
Focusing excessively on adding features results in marketing myopia, which means concentrating on the product itself rather than the need it is designed to fulfill.
This short-signed approach applies to companies that ignore consumer needs and look in the mirror rather than through the window.
A famous quote from general motors and it’s relevant to the product concept to some extent;
“How can the public know what kind of car they want until they see what is available?
Importance of Product Concept
As product concepts establish the vision or strategy for a new product or service, they’re a great way to get buy-in from senior stakeholders long before any kind of work takes place.
Product concepts provide a starting point for discussion and continued improvement, so sharing them as early as possible is both beneficial and essential.
Product concepts also serve as a check-in mechanism — by returning to the initial product concept statement, teams can determine whether they’re still on track and building something that satisfies the criteria outlined in the document.
In the next section, we’ll cover the types of products in the market so you can align your product concepts with consumer needs and expectations.
Advantages of product concepts
There are many benefits to using product concepts:
- Quality over quantity
Product concepts are all about balancing high quality, accessibility and performance. As new ideas are shared as product concepts, you can start to assess and evaluate them, discarding low-quality ideas much earlier in the process.
This ensures that you only ever go to production with product concepts that are most likely to achieve success — e.g. align with customer needs — and support business goals.
- Develop curiosity
When established brands bring new product concepts to market, consumers are inevitably interested; they want to purchase the product and see the new features to satisfy their curiosity.
As for the brands, they keep themselves in the media for as long as possible to increase perceived value and awareness of the new product concept.
- Increase margins
If a company has created a strong product concept and marketed it effectively to its target audience, e.g. they’ve displayed the very high quality of the product and its functional value, it can charge more than its competitors.
Remember, quality over quantity is the name of the game, and if consumers are aware of that fact (and it’s embedded in their minds), they’ll spend more.
Disadvantages of product concepts
The disadvantages of product concepts include:
- Irrelevant and impractical features
One of the main concerns with early product concepts is that in the race for innovation and differentiation, there’s a risk of going off track and missing the needs of potential customers.
Even with unique features and better quality, it’s important to focus on functional value. What is the problem you are trying to solve with the product concept?
- Price concerns
In many markets, consumers are very price-conscious. They prefer cheaper solutions rather than products with higher quality because they are more affordable.
With this in mind, if you have a target market or segment that is more price-conscious than your other buyers, consider creating a lite version of your product concept (where practical).
Examples of Product Concept
Apple is one of the world’s largest tech companies and it falls under the category of top 5 tech companies of the world.
The company also follows the product concept by the focus on delivering a quality product. The customer market of Apple doesn’t care about the price.
Gucci is one of the world’s leading luxury fashion brands. The company offers quality makeup, handbags, ready-to-wear clothes, shoes, fragrances, home decorations, and many other accessories.
The brand also follows the product concept by offering the latest fashionable products to the customers. The customers are willing to pay a higher price for the Gucci products.
After carefully studying the article, we have established the fact that the product concept is suitable for certain factors. But it isn’t suitable in the price-conscious market.
Therefore, you have to keep in mind such factors before applying this philosophy to your business. If your business is suitable for the product concept, follow it. Otherwise, it’s better if you look for other options.