June 1, 2023


Moving Forward

Marketing Strategy – Product Line Strategy: Five Approaches

One of the key concerns for anybody accountable for a company’s promoting system is how to regulate several products (or products and services) for the potential as well as improve merchandise possibilities in the current.

It turns out there are a variety of strategies to fixing that problem, which would make it a not-so-effortless strategic selection. I will briefly focus on just about every of these in this posting and spotlight a several difficulties with every single approach.

The first, which is also the most clear-cut, is to frequently check sector traits. That is, preserve observe of and document sector tendencies and purchaser responses to ensure that your portfolio’s items align with the latest developments and client calls for.

That appears simple, but it will take a ton of time and assets to remain up on market developments, particularly if they are often in flux. Also, acquiring and analyzing trustworthy facts from different resources can be demanding.

A second solution depends on segmenting the current market by benefits. When you acquire that strategy, it gets to be simple to differentiate your products and solutions by industry phase (or descriptors of who is in every section). That way, you will attain clarity on how the overall portfolio of products fits collectively. This tactic will also allow you to evaluate the dimension and progress of each and every section, giving you a longer-expression perspective of running your distinct goods.

Unfortunately, nonetheless, most B2B providers rather count on vertical marketing, the plan of which is to provide goods and solutions specialised for shoppers in a certain business or vertical—which is not genuinely segmenting a current market. Consequently, such vertical or classification ways to segmentation won’t give you the point of view required for a straightforward method to running a portfolio of products and solutions.

A third method depends on solution daily life cycle administration. In a preceding short article, I talked about classic solution existence cycles. That is, you often look at your merchandise portfolio and handle the merchandise lifestyle cycle of each product or service to see irrespective of whether they need updates, changes, or new releases.

So, envision every of your solutions on a whiteboard with its very own solution everyday living cycle depicted. Some of your products and solutions will be at the introduction stage, others at a additional mature phase. You can conveniently see how those people diverse products need to be managed in another way.

Amid the number of issues with this technique is that not all goods observe the exact daily life cycle: Although the product existence cycle model helps measure the general performance of personal merchandise, it may well not correctly capture the life cycle of each individual item a business sells. Some items may possibly have for a longer time or shorter lifetime cycles or may possibly knowledge surprising spikes in demand that do not in shape neatly within just the everyday living cycle phases.

Also, concentrating entirely on the product daily life cycle can guide to a misalignment with broader enterprise strategy, this sort of as diversifying products strains or getting into new marketplaces. Corporations must be contemplating the role of each product within the broader context of their business ambitions and approach.

A fourth solution is to classify the unique products by priority: Prioritize the goods centered on enterprise goals and profits possible and fully grasp which products and solutions will considerably effects the sector.

The dilemma with this system is that by concentrating entirely on the precedence level assigned to a unique solution, you could neglect other critical aspects, these types of as consumer tastes and market trends. Also, this strategy may possibly not enable for alterations in priority concentrations based mostly on shifts in the market, client tastes, or other external aspects. Ultimately, by focusing solely on superior-priority products, a enterprise may possibly overlook out on prospective income from reduce-precedence merchandise that even now have current market desire.

A fifth perspective, and an approach I favor, manages a team of solutions/expert services jointly as component of a portfolio. The emphasis below is on business synergies: A company is considered of as a collection of linked enterprises.

This method explicitly recognizes differential source necessities: Some products and solutions need means, even though other people present means. In this look at, you can produce a products road map to make certain that the solution enhancement approach is streamlined and aligned with business targets.

The methodology of this viewpoint is to at the same time review all solutions in phrases of current market attractiveness and competitive placement. A visible illustration of this tactic is offered beneath.

Essentially, you spot all your merchandise and solutions into a 2 x 2 matrix based mostly on attractiveness (or market place growth likely) and competitive situation (or relative sector share). Make the dimensions of each individual solution (the circle) greater or smaller sized to signify the relative profits contribution of that item to your firm.

As soon as you generate this portfolio strategy, you can quickly see how to evolve goods (from small market share in large-development markets to higher industry share) and source deployment (going hard cash from very low-growth but substantial industry-share merchandise). This method mirrors the typical Boston Consulting Group matrix, where products with large industry share but low growth represent the basic “dollars cow.”

Of study course, the difficulty with this approach is how to determine with precision the dividing line concerning high advancement and small expansion, and particularly the place industry share shifts from large to small.

Nevertheless, by generating a merchandise portfolio management technique, you make it a lot easier to efficiently control numerous products and solutions at the same time while ensuring that each individual products contributes to your enterprise advancement.

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In sum: all strategies to handling a number of products have downsides, but it can be important to select a single and actually have an understanding of the added benefits and challenges of that strategy. That way you’ll be ready to efficiently regulate not only your numerous products and solutions but also the dangers that inevitably crop up.