Owner manager Declan Droney provides advice to anyone who is starting a company with a view to being first with a product or service.
Droney’s own company, Kinvara, for example, was the first Irish company to offer Irish organic smoked salmon to the market.
Having a unique product gives you first-mover advantage and puts you in a good position to build your market and your brand quickly. It also puts you under pressure to capture the market before your competitors catch up.
Be clear of what the unique selling point of your product is and what need it will satisfy for your customer. Build a public relations (PR) campaign around this in trade and consumer press, which are always happy to carry editorial on new and innovative products.
A well-written PR piece will yield great results and this third-party recommendation will speak volumes for your product and will set your brand apart right from the start. Use these positive press quotes as part of your marketing. Everyone wants to be part of a good news story, so use this momentum and work hard to get the product on shelf.
Work on the marketing mix
In this introductory and growth phases of your product’s life cycle, it is important to get the other aspects of the marketing mix right, ie, price, place and promotion. Don’t overprice your product just because you have the market to yourself as competitors will soon arrive to undercut you. Invest in promotion of your product, such as price reduction, introductory offer or tastings/demonstrations. This is a really exciting phase for any new business – enjoy it, work hard, take small steps and learn from the small mistakes you will inevitably make along the way.
Contributed by Declan Droney
Photo: Kinvara owner manager Declan Droney