Beware tight and inflexible product briefs

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: New product development, Retailing, Product management, Product development

The number of times I have seen poor packaging design ruin the opportunity for the success of new products. Packaging and the design of packaging...

The number of times I have seen poor packaging design ruin the opportunity for the success of new products. Packaging and the design of packaging plays a huge role in the new product development process. It is the first thing that appeals to the consumer. But as well as being attractive, it is essential that packaging is fit for purpose, easy to open and supplies clear information and labelling that has an appealing design.

This can become a problem, particularly when briefs are too tight and inflexible. For example, retailers often have very tight briefs. So unless working on branded items, manufacturers have little influence over what makes the end product. It's in the lap of the retailer.

When a brief arrives, it usually lands with a thud. It usually comes in the form of a massive document providing a huge amount of information and a guide into the areas that the retailer wishes you to explore. The technique is to be able to read and decipher the key elements that are important in your product portfolio. Despite being passionate about the products I work on, I believe that it is important to have a logical approach to their design and evolution. Despite being creative, new product development requires an element of common sense.

I will usually dismantle the products to their key components and challenge their presence, process and function within the finished item. By doing this you can strip back all of the unnecessary ingredients and assemble a clean product that delivers on appearance and taste. This approach may seem extremely simple but it seems to work. My knowledge extends rapidly this way and fuels my motivation and desire to broaden my portfolio.

So it is important to stay flexible when producing new products and think through concepts logically. Otherwise they may not be a success.

Becky Sparks is director and food technologist at Sparkling Innovation mailto:r.l.sparks@totalise.co.uk

Related topics: NPD

Follow us

Products

View more

Webinars

PRODUCTS & SERVICES