A product is anything that meets the requirements of a particular market, this term involves a lot of dimensions because it is essential to recognize what contributes to the “total product offer”1 in order to be successful in the market or simple to keep our customers satisfy. A service is an intangible economic activity, not stored and does not result in ownership; Services nowadays are becoming more important and growing faster and consumers are more apprehensive with performance and satisfaction when they use a service or buy a product.
For that reason, making decisions about services and products has been becoming a big challenge for marketers. First of all there are 3 levels of a product marketing, the first one is core product benefits, it refers to the perceived value, image, the performance and features, the second one is the Product attributes like brand name, quality, design, staff behavior, price and packaging and the third one is the support services it focus on the Services in the deliver of the product or the after sales services; this three levels are the base of the possibilities that marketers have to standardize the product.
In order to be distinctive the differentiation of the core product is a different way of satisfying the same need or want but creating an additional value to the costumer and competitive advantage for the company; to make this possible marketers should include and evaluate five elements quality, features, style and design, branding, packing, labeling and product support services.
These 5 elements implicate a certain characteristics that focused in how the consumers perceive these elements, what is the consumer perception of quality? What is the impact of the design and style of the product in the buying behavior? How can I attract attention with my package? How can I promote the product with the labels? And which services can add value to my product “guarantees, livery, hotline”.
Another aspect are the Product lines, there are cataloged as a strategy to enlarge profits, a company with products lines use and has product mix, it has four dimensions, width, length, depth and consistency their classification depends on the number of the products or of the lines that a company has. “These product mix dimension provide the handles for defining the firms product strategy”2 It helps to improve the successful products and eliminate the obsolete or nonprofit ones and also to develop the introduction of a new the ones.
Talking about services, before contemplating strategies marketers has to consider the nature of the services like intangibility, perishability, heterogeneity and inseparability and also the categories of the service that they are offering in order to determinate the service quality gap which involves the perceived service quality “interaction of customers and services” and how the company can minimize the problems related to the service and how to maximize the value Hollensen Svend, Opresnik Marc, Marketing a Relationship perspective, 2010 Verlag Franz Vahlen GmbH 2 Hollensen Svend, Opresnik Marc, Marketing a Relationship perspective, 2010 Verlag Franz Vahlen GmbH ??? of the use; elements to achieve this goal are supporting customers after their sales and to give costumers a full service in terms of contracts.
Due to continually changing consumer tastes and innovation in markets the life cycle of a product is describe through four distinct stages the Introduction, growth, maturity and decline it is for this reason that nowadays companies must develop new products and services, but it is not simple, to do that the company should understand its customers, markets and also the stakeholders that can be involved in the NDP.
To finding the potential new products exist an amount of specific stages the first one Idea generation, the second one is Idea screening, the third one is Concept developing an testing, then they have to develop the marketing strategy after analyzed the business to develop the product and the final 2 stages are Test marketing and commercialization. For international markets the products can divide in two levels of newness. First one the product may be totally new invention “new to the world” or a little modification of an existing product if companies want to reduce costs, improvements or repositions theirs products.
These two levels are classified in four categories that explain how companies use these types; it is depending on cases and products as well; as I said before if the product is a new invention or improve one existing product. These four categories are products replacements, additions to existing lines, new products lines and new to the world and new to the world products. It is necessary that marketers of the companies have to know about these categories to launch the products.
On the other hand when other brands launch products in the market generate sales decrease of existing products and it is a wrong strategy. That is why managers have to consider cannibalization strategy to ensure remaining of new products and also recognizable products that have to be substituted. How do marketers evaluate factors that are no involved in the product development stage? Which tools marketers used in order to create the best strategies to arrange their market target? Which is the better way to identify the persuasions of the customers?