Guide

Product life cycle

Introduction stage of a product life cycle

The introduction stage of a product's life cycle is when you can build an awareness of your product or service in certain markets.

Introduction stage of product life cycle - objectives

During the introduction stage, you should concentrate on building a base for your product, and focus on the following marketing factors:

  • pricing
  • distribution
  • promotion

Price your product or service

You should initially start pricing at the highest point you believe it is possible to achieve. You can also consider a skimming price strategy - charging a relatively high price for a short time when you launch a new, innovative or much-improved product. The aim of skimming is to skim off customers who are willing to pay more to be one of the first to have a new product. You can lower the prices later when demand from the early adopters falls.

A penetration pricing strategy may work best for businesses entering a new market or building on a relatively small market share. It involves the setting of lower, rather than higher prices to achieve a large, if not dominant market share.

See how to price your product or service.

Distribution

Your distribution should be selective and limited to a specific type of consumer until your product is accepted. Also, you should consider different distribution models during different periods of the product life cycle, eg new products for different seasons in a clothes shop.

Promotion

You should try to build brand awareness at an early stage. It is worth working with a brand design or communications agency as you develop a product to establish a strong brand.

You can use samples or trial incentives to capture early adopters of the product or service. Introductory promotions can also help convince potential resellers to carry your lines. Different marketing strategies work better at different stages of the product’s life cycle. Read more about the product life cycle strategies.

Product life cycle introduction: profitability

It is likely that, at the introduction stage, your sales will be low until customers become aware of your product or your service's benefits. Due to the high cost of advertising and low initial sales, it is possible that you won't make immediate profits or you may even find that the product is producing negative profits. However, you should make up for this with increasing revenue generated at the growth and maturity stage of a product life cycle.