Product development: how construction innovations arise

Photo of an engineer holding two rolls of paper in his hand, symbolizing product development in the construction industry.

There are those who think that a new item is released immediately after someone has an idea and puts it into practice. But that's not how things work. There are several product development steps that must be followed to ensure the successful creation, validation and insertion of the release of a product into the market.

In civil construction, you can see a series of innovation emerging in recent years, which arouses curiosity to know how the entire process is done. With that in mind, we decided to bring this post to talk about it. Continue reading and check it out!

Why follow product development steps?

The product development process is complex and must be well structured. It starts with the conception of the idea and goes all the way to the release of the product in the market.

Along this path, it is necessary to carry out several analyses, such as:

  • consumer need;
  • market trends;
  • economic viability;
  • competition;
  • positioning;
  • among others.

In the business world, there is a term for this: new product development (NPD). Within this concept, there are several methods to turn these ideas into potential products.

It is worth mentioning that even by following the entire protocol, there are still risks of a product not consolidating in the market — it is not uncommon to know of items that go out of line shortly after their launch or that need to go through long adaptation processes. 

That is why, every care in the development stages is essential.. Any mistake can result in the product not being accepted by consumers and, thus, not being successful in sales.

Among the biggest flaws in the process we can cite the attempt to copy competitors' products and follow trends without evaluating what really matters, namely, the customer's desire. Therefore, it is important to correctly execute all stages of new product development to increase the chances of success.

What are the biggest mistakes when developing a product?

As we said, any mistake in the new product development process can be determinant for failure. For this reason, it is interesting to know what the biggest mistakes are in order to avoid them. See below.

Thinking that "good idea" means a "good product"

It's important to understand that a good idea can be awesome, but only on paper. In reality, chances are it won't work as expected and won't make a good product. So you have to keep your feet on the ground, even if the concept is extraordinary.

The development of a new item in the construction market does not just depend on good insights, but also on several other factors. Therefore, if the good idea is not executed very well, it will not have much relevance in the market.

Not considering the consumer's desires and needs

Speaking of consumers, one of the most fatal mistakes in the new product development process is not considering their wants, pains and needs. After all, the product that is being developed is destined for them once launched, so it's critical that the customers be the focus of the business.

It's no use creating an incredible product, full of features and differentials if, at that moment, the customer needs something simpler and more practical. Thus, the solution does not focus on the target audience's problem and becomes uninteresting for those who matter most to the company.

Copying competitors

Know that inspiration is different from copying. Being 100% original is something difficult, since there's a multitude of existing solutions already present in the market. Therefore, it is also common that products that are adaptations or inspired by other market alternatives emerge, aiming to bring differentials.

However, this does not mean that you need to copy a competitor's product that sells well. The consumer is more demanding and knows when an item is an opportunistic copy and cannot replicate the success of another brand.

As a result, the company's credibility is undermined. Therefore, before releasing a copy, you need to consider the brand's value propositions in product development.

Fail market analysis

Market analysis is one of the most important steps in the process. Because of this, it must be done with the greatest possible zeal to avoid mistakes. Any failure at this point can determine the failure of the launch. In this sense, it is important to observe the following steps:

  • study the competition;
  • mapping opportunities and threats;
  • assess demand;
  • identify trends;
  • price the products properly. 

Make a mistake in marketing

A well done marketing is able to save a product, which would otherwise not have much future, and increase its acceptance with the public.

However, the opposite also happens. A poorly made strategy can ruin a good launch and all the efforts of the previous steps. The most common problems at this step are: 

  • wrong definition of personas (characters that represent the ideal customer); 
  • bad distribution; 
  • insufficient publicity; 
  • poor choice of communication channels. 

Therefore, marketing should not be neglected. From distribution to dissemination and promotion actions, it is a fundamental part of the success of the new product.

What are the product development steps?

Now that you know how important it is to follow the steps of product development and what the biggest mistakes are, it's time to understand how the process works. Take a look.

Brainstorming

Brainstorming is a technique that favors creativity, being the starting point of new product development. With a pre-determined goal, the team comes together to unleash creativity and capture insights.

The main theme of this meeting may come from consumer needs, sales trends, competitors' actions, or even customer suggestions.

Idea screening

With the ideas on paper, a screening is made to select the most promising and viable ones, considering production and commercialization.

Several criteria are considered in this screening, such as:

  • production costs;
  • technical viability;
  • company budget;
  • target market perspectives;
  • among others.

This way, only the insights with the greatest potential continue to be developed.

Preliminary testing and prototyping

This step is to assess whether the product can fulfill its purpose — to be a solution to a specific persona problem. This is when the internal and external research must be carried out in order to understand if the consumer recognizes the value of the item.

There is also the possibility of creating a prototype to be tested with a control group of customers. Thus, the assessment can be even more faithful and deliver more detailed results.

Market evaluation

After the product design is tested and approved, it's time to do a more complete and detailed analysis of the market. In the study, it is necessary to check economic viability, competition, segment and target audience.

With this information, it is possible to prepare a business plan that contains the objectives, strategies and metrics necessary to market the new product.

Development

In the development phase itself, all the planning is put into practice. That is, based on the results of research and tests, the ideal product is created.

The process has:

  • product design;
  • brand creation;
  • production;
  • packaging;
  • commercialization.

In addition to these, there is the bureaucratic part with patents, certifications and licenses. 

Market validation

In the market validation, which takes place before the official launch, the last tests are carried out. Therefore, it's more focused on persona-aligned consumer groups.

Thus, it is possible to analyze whether the result meets the expectations of the target audience. If you have something to tweak, there's still time before scaling up production.

Launch

The release is the completion of product development. In it, it is necessary to have a structured campaign to reach the ideal consumer. In this case, it is necessary to invest in the right media, with a message that touches the end customer.

Distribution must also be guaranteed at strategic points so that the novelty is available to consumers even before the launch campaign.

After all, how do innovative products in civil construction arise?

As you can see, new products go through several stages before being launched on the market. Still at the stage of generating ideas, a constant concern in the development of products for civil construction is sustainability.

Consumers are more aware of their role in environmental preservation and seek innovations in this regard. We know that civil construction produces many residues and, consequently impacts the environment.

For this reason, more sustainable materials and techniques are one of the focuses of this production. Within this line of reasoning, there are some criteria for product development:

  • minimization or non-production of residues that the environment fails to neutralize;
  • use of renewable resources whenever possible; 
  • optimization of non-renewable resources. 

In this way, we can find products that contribute to the ecosystem, either directly or indirectly. The use of recycling, such as with Styrofoam® residues, in the manufacture of civil construction items is a good example of this.

Throughout this post, we showed how product development is done, from its conception to its launch. So, you can see that there is a lot of work behind the launch of something new in the market, especially in civil construction innovations.

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