95% of new products fail — Here’s how to succeed

95% of new products fail — Here’s how to succeed

This post was originally published on February 20, 2019, and updated most recently on March 21, 2021.

The sky’s the limit, or so the saying goes. And if you’re a talented entrepreneur with a great new product, what can possibly go wrong? Apparently quite a lot: According to Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen, there are over 30,000 new products introduced every year, and 95% fail. Ouch.

No one’s immune. Coca-Cola, Google, and Colgate all, at some point in their illustrious careers, launched products that monumentally flopped. For some, it was due to poor market research: There simply wasn’t a need for the product. For others, it was attempting to venture too far out of their area of expertise. Others were just downright weird —lasagna from a toothpaste brand? Pass!

These products seem so obviously wrong, right? But at some point, somewhere, a marketing team, backed by (probably) millions of dollars, decided to give these bizarre ideas the go-ahead. This goes to show just how easy it is for even the most experienced people to flop.

While the above examples are notably bad, plenty of good products fail too. This could be for a multitude of reasons: insufficient funding, lack of promotion, and poor timing being just three. Product launches are notoriously difficult, but there are steps you can take to ensure your venture has the best shot possible.

How to plan a successful product launch

Getting each detail of a product launch right requires weeks of research and planning, but we wanted to make understanding the process as a whole quick and simple. That’s why we decided to break things down into an easy-to-read infographic.

Ready to make your next product launch a success? Your first step is reading this fun infographic.

How to launch a new product in 14 steps

The work doesn’t stop

Clearly you have to be extremely passionate and believe undeniably in the product you’re putting out to market. But, even after you have a successful product out in the world, the work doesn’t end there. You will continuously be fixing, revising, and reiterating steps of your process to ensure an even better product. Have you ever noticed how many updates the apps on your phone have every Monday? There’s a reason for that! Even well-established products and services are constantly tweaking, adding to, and taking away aspects of their offering.

You sure you’re ready for the long-term responsibility that comes with success? Of course you are!

Final thoughts

Proper planning is key to ensuring your product launch is a success. Investing in good project management software will help you plan launch dates, allocate resources, and keep all your schedules working together and on track. Not only that, but it’ll help your team (and investors) collaborate in real-time from anywhere with the help of the cloud. In the whirlwind of activity that surrounds a product launch, the more organized you are, the better.

What are your top tips for ensuring your product launch is a success? Share your stories with us on Twitter!

Georgina Guthrie Georgina is a displaced Brit currently working in France as a freelance copywriter. Before moving to sunnier climates, she worked as a B2B agency writer in Bristol, England, which is also where she was born. In her spare time, she enjoys old films and cooking (badly).