Innovation is nothing without marketing – and vice versa.
It’s obvious that marketing on it’s own can’t drive markets for a longer period. It’s necessary to have products or services which are special – or in best case they are brand-new and unique – as long as the competitor adapt them.
The most successful word in advertising is “new”.
“Good morning. What are we going to invent today?”
Previously, the Germans managed all ten to twelve years to a new TV, today they replace their old device supposedly after four to six years. It is even faster in computers and mobile phones. Every three years we buy a new computer. “There is a dualism ,” says Tobias Langner , marketing professor at the University of Wuppertal. “The manufacturers offer innovations in a particular rhythm , and the buyer want to have that, too. ”
“The product life cycles of many electronic devices now sit on the rate of development of the chips,” says Michael Schidlack from the IT industry association Bitkom . This is sometimes only a few months, which drives the development of new devices. Secondly, the shortening of product life cycles is due to the competition. The innovation can thereby be technically or aesthetically. So sometimes it is important for the buyer of a car to have a nice new cockpit design with cupholders than a vehicle with innovative rear axle, which the purchaser cannot experience.
The automotive industry enjoys working with model cosmetics. A few new, chic headlights, a new body design, a few small changes in the interior – the vehicle is adapted to the spirit of the times and is purchased. Was the product life cycle of vehicles in the 70s on average eight years it was in the 90s already three years. Today, a car gets its first facelift often within two to three years.
At the moment you buy a new computer and tow it out of the store it’s worth the half.
4 P = product, place, price, promotion
These 4 P haven’t changed over the last 20 years even they have been expanded by three further P: people, process, physical facilities. But these three ones are more or less focussed on the service branch – I won’t talk about them in this article because they are less relevant concerning the life cycle development today.
Companies have to deal with this facts. You can’t stand this development by ignoring it. When you know that the product life cycles shorten you have to make the same turnover/profit in a shorter period of time. That’s it. But therefore you need to use the marketing mix as good as you can.
Concrete advices when life cycles shorten in your branch:
- rework products, too, but more often only in details – not always in total
- distribute faster by using more channels or salesman – or by using unusual channels
- increase the price – be sensitized when your competitor has caught up and decreases the price by providing the same quality
- promote with high pressure – be brave by doing this to increase your share of voice and share of advertising, use public relations by telling stories (even the marketing branch is trying to tell you that storytelling becomes more and more less relevant)
To get to the point:
Drive ideas and innovations. If you have one use professional marketing to define the right product features, price, place and promotion. Good luck!
(Source: Produktlebenszyklen “Immer schneller neuer”, Thorsten Scheimann; http://www.tagesspiegel.de/wirtschaft/produktlebenszyklen-immer-schneller-neuer/4041756.html)