In the marketing world, the product life cycle is a very common concept used by almost every company across different industries. It is not surprising at all if marketing students are asked to write an assignment on this concept during their academic career. Most of the first-year students struggle with the concept since they lack a general idea of this concept.
To shed light on this, this blog will provide you with complete guidance on the product life cycle and its theories. This blog intends to join the pieces of the puzzle together to present you the whole picture.
An Overview on Product life cycle and Product life cycle management
An appropriate definition of the product life cycle would be the stages a product goes through after been introduced in the market. Every product that is launched in the market has a cycle of its own. This is a process which marks the growth or development of a product.
However, a product does not get recognized by the customers overnight. So, the marketers or the businessmen go through various strategies to ensure the success of the product. These strategies are known as product life cycle management. It brings employees, different departments, engineers together to make strategies on how to fulfill their goal, outperforming competitors, making the product desirable for a long time.
An efficient product life cycle management will offer a high quality market, increase the sale markets, strategising on improving product features, increasing sales opportunities, etc. They make different strategies for each stage.
What are the Different Stages in a Product Life Cycle?
At each stage of the product life cycle, the management makes plans on how to do marketing & present the product or what new features to add. There are 4 stages; each comes with different characteristics for the management to maintain.
The first stage, the introduction stage is probably the most expensive since the company is just launching a new product in the market. As the product has just been introduced in the market, the product sale will be low, and the profit will remain nominal. Hence, the cost of the product will be high initially since the cost of production is high. An appropriate product life cycle example would be the instance of Nestle’s Maggi which took several years to make its position in the Indian market.
In the initial stage, the product will not be facing much competition since it has just appeared in the market. The company will invest mostly in advertising and promoting the product. The marketing team will use different tools and strategies to make the target audience aware of the product in the market. However, the quality of the product will be indecisive since they will only be focusing on reaching to the target audience.
This is the most crucial stage for product life cycle marketing as the growth of sale takes place rapidly. Since the customer already recognizes the product, a growth of sale is seen. The profit gets increased since the demand for the product is high. Some of the company only tends to stay until the introduction stage, whereas for other companies, this is the stage of gaining most profits. During this stage, the brands improve the quality of their products, add new features, spread more outlets, increase distribution channels, and reduce the cost if profit is low. Investing more in promotional activity will increase the potential of gaining more profit.
This is the stage where its potential competitors can threaten the product. The maturity stage defines the time when the product has stabilised in the market. The manufactures now have to make sure the product remains at its position. The manufactures need to think logically before making any decision. They will gradually decrease the cost of the product since the volume of the product has been increased. This is the period when more competitors seem to join the market.
The last stage, i.e., the decline stage is when the product starts to show negative results in the market. There is less cash flow since there are other alternative or better products in the market. This is when the brands try to regain its share of production by reminding the customers of the existence of the product through various promotional strategies. However, gaining profit becomes more challenging at this stage since the volume of the sales decline. Marketing team tends to bring new ideas or a new product from where it can gain profit.
Production life cycle is a theory that helps a company to stay alert of the required steps they need to take. The process is rather easy and fruitful since the company continuously scans the product at every stage. Students who have to write an assignment on product life cycle can lay the groundwork based on this information.
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