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New product failure: Five potential sources discussed

Dijksterhuis, Garmt
Trends in food science & technology 2016 v.50 pp. 243-248
consumer behavior, marketing, models, product development, products and commodities
When new consumer products are developed and later launched, 50 to 75 percent of them are removed from the market far short of meeting their projected financial targets. In short: they fail. We conclude that this failure is due to institutionalized insufficiencies in the use of the sciences that are best geared to understand and predict consumer behaviour, viz. the behavioural sciences. These are not necessarily the same as the marketing science that is performed by marketing departments. A scientific approach to understanding consumer behaviour appears to be lacking in many corporate research surroundings. This often is in great contrast with their high levels of technological science, paralleled by their respective research budgets. In this paper we present five problem areas that may contribute to this mismatch, contributing to needlessly high numbers of product failures. We have termed these factors: (1) ‘pillars’ (too many different functions addressing different aspects of the consumers and of product development), (2) ‘higher management focus’ (not geared towards understanding consumer behaviour), (3) ‘popular science books’ (out-dated research directives resulting from a hierarchical management model), (4) ‘quality and Quality’ (a definition of ‘quality’ that leads to invalid quality parameters), and (5) ‘psychophobia’ (the latent fear of trusting behavioural science results), respectively.