Marketing starts with the product since it is what an organization has to offer its target market. As we stress throughout the Principles of Marketing Tutorials, organizations attempt to provide solutions to a target market’s problems. These solutions include tangible or intangible (or both) product offerings marketed by an organization.
In addition to satisfying the target market’s needs, the product is crucial because it is how organizations generate revenue. It is what a for-profit company sells in order to realize profits and satisfy financial stakeholders (e.g., stockholders). Products are also important for many not-for-profit organizations where they are used to generate revenue needed to support operations (e.g., fund raising). Without a well-developed product strategy that includes input from the target market, a marketing organization will not have long-term success.
In this part of the Principles of Marketing Tutorials we take a close look at the key concepts all marketers should consider when faced with product decisions. In the Managing Products Tutorial we will extend the discussion to look at the key issues in managing product decisions.