Innovation Challenge – When should a product die?
All companies – whether they make cars, electronics, software, etc. – know that there is only so much new life that they can breathe into their existing products by introducing new improved versions. Ultimately any product will reach the end of its life, and a brand new one will have to be launched in its stead.
The critical question is: when?
Assuming the product life-cycle follows the typical S curve, nobody in their right mind would wait until the product has started to actually decline and lose market share, to trigger a replacement. Yet, it can be difficult to recognize that the end is nigh, that a new improved version will not revive the product, and that a brand new one is necessary.
What are the signs that companies can read to recognize that the end is nigh and that it is time to make the clear-cut decision to design, develop and launch a new product?
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Yann Cramer is an innovation learner, practitioner, sharer, teacher. He’s lived in France, Belgium and the UK, he’s travelled six continents to create development opportunities with customers or suppliers, and run workshops on R&D and Marketing. He writes on www.innovToday.com and on twitter @innovToday.