Women In Business

The no-fuss 6-step way to get a product into the market

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It’s one thing to have a mind-blowing product, but do you have a plan to get the product into the market? Many start-ups get sucked into the trap of focusing on the ‘fun and creative stuff’ when launching an entrepreneurial product idea. The reality is, start-ups with this mentality don’t make it past the three-year mark. The key to success is a top down business approach.

A top down approach is the strategy of visualising the end goal for a product and working backwards. During my four year journey building my business Giselle&I and launching the product Soothe Me Baby tea, I met numerous businesses with perfectly created products. Similarly, in this time, I also saw the fall of many of these products because of simple mistakes. Businesses commonly partner with the wrong suppliers and manufacturers, forget to patent names and ideas and don’t have approval from the appropriate licensing bodies. My simple six step top down strategy check list alleviates the risk of wasting time, energy and money when launching a product. 

Here are my tips on how to implement a top down approach.

1. Think of where you would like to see your product

“This is where you envisage your target market buying, consuming or using the product. For example, if you visualise your product being sold in pharmacies and selected health food stores, think of what your product needs to be able to be sold in these locations.”

2 Research what licences and qualifications you need

“All products have specific guidelines, safety checks and standards that need to be met. Research into what licensing bodies you need to go through in order to have your product approved. Ensure you know the product inside and out and understand the requirements of the licensing body in order to get the product approved. Only then are you ready to put forward your product.”

3. Find a relevant industry manufacturer, wholesaler or contractor

“Speak to numerous manufacturers and choose one that aligns with your product and your vision. Make sure they meet the safety and legal requirements needed to correctly produce your product. Ensure you only agree to terms and contracts that you are comfortable with.”

4. Brand your product

“Once you have established a relationship with your manufacture or supplier and they are contracted to work on your product, it is time to think of a product name. Come up with an original name that makes your product stand out and captures the essence of the product. Check what names are already taken to avoid disappointment later on.”

5. Trademark and patent your idea, product and name

“As soon as you have an established product idea and name, trademark and patent it straight away. This includes patenting any innovative methods, formulas or procedures that could be easily copied by a competitor. Remember to also file your ABN number.”

6. Design

“Once you have completed all the previous steps, only then are you ready to get into the fun, creative stuff. Think of your product design, packaging, price, logo, flyers, business cards and banners. Don’t forget to target your marketing and creative designs to your target market.”

When the product is ready to go and the manufacturing processes are in place, you are ready to engage consumers. Create brand awareness and networks by attending exhibitions, engage your target market through traditional and social media channels and always ask for feedback. This exposure can lead to distribution deals, direct consumer sales and supplier contracts.

The top down business approach leaves little room for error. It is not the only way to do business, but it most certainly worked in my favour and I hope it works in yours.

About Lily Toma

Lily Toma is the founder of the Australian entrepreneurial business Giselle&I. While being a mother of six, with the youngest being 1 and the oldest 12, Lily has managed to build her business and launch the babies’ and kid’s product, Soothe Me Baby tea. Soothe Me Baby is an all-natural tea proven to provide relief from colic, stomach pains, nausea, bloating, wind, indigestion and any gastrointestinal discomforts. Her drive for achieving this success comes from the desire to be a positive role model for her daughters, to show them that they can be whatever they want to be if they are willing to work hard for it. Lily wants to share her business experience to empower other mothers and women alike.

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