New Product Development and Marketing

Please note!
This USE Learning trajectory will be rescheduled as of academic year 2016-2017.

The planning will be: 
1ZEUA0 from Q2 to Q1
1ZSUA0 from Q3 to Q2
1ZAUA0 only in Q3
1ZAUC0 only in Q4

New Product Development and Marketing

A famous CEO once said: “I am not in the business of employing engineers, but in the business of creating wonderful new products that our customers love.” Many engineers know extremely well how to develop a technically sophisticated product or how to optimize its manufacturing process, but have limited insight into whether this product is one that customers would actually buy. As a result, new products often fail. Numerous large established companies have had such experiences. For example, the tablet PC introduced by Microsoft long before Apple’s iPad was a great product from a technical point of view, but its price tag and features did not align with customers’ needs. It was also released in a time where the Internet was immature, social media were non-existent, and software was not “appified”. As a result, the tablet PC did not offer much value to the mainstream customer. This example shows the importance of matching the product to prospective customers and their environment.

The New Product Development & Marketing USE sequence is created to help the engineers of the future develop better products. In this sequence, you will learn how to analyze customer needs and measure the market potential for a new technology or product. You will learn how to uncover unarticulated customer needs, translate these needs into technical product features, and set the right price, select the best distribution channel, promotion strategy, and launch timing for your product. In the end, developing the right product for the right target audience is what drives sales and profit.

If you have an ambition of working your way up in your future organization, this USE sequence’s strategies and techniques will be an essential resource; they provide you with business skills to bring products to the market successfully, next to your ability to contribute to their technical development or manufacturing process.

Exploration

The exploratory course New Product Marketing teaches you the foundations of marketing with a unique focus on new products. Marketing is oftentimes regarded as “selling products”. However, this course introduces a more contemporary view, in which translating customer needs into a successful product takes center stage. Attention will be given to understanding customer buying behavior, and analyzing how customers with similar needs can be bundled into segments. You will also learn how firms identify which segments they want to target with their new product or service. This includes balancing short-term profit considerations with long-term strategic arguments. Ultimately, this course provides you with a marketing toolbox that many firms use to build a competitive position. In the course, you will put these tools to practice yourself when you write a marketing plan for a new product that may be released on the market one day.

Specialization

The USE sequence New Product Development & Marketing has one specialization course: Marketing Research and Design Methods. This course extends your toolbox from the exploratory course with research methods to uncover unarticulated customer needs and to analyze how customer needs can best be translated into product features. In other words: which features should a product have to offer the most value to customers? Because today’s firms use a large variety of marketing research and design methods, we teach you three methods which are vastly different, but at the same time add to each other. The first method is cultural probing. It is qualitative in nature, relies on interviews, thinking out-of-the-box, and aims to gather data about customer’s lives, values and thoughts, that may be valuable in new product development. The second method is multidimensional scaling. It is quantitative in nature and uses ordination techniques to visualize information in a distance matrix. Correct interpretation of these matrices helps firms to see what customers think about their product in comparison to the products of the competition. The final method is conjoint analysis. It also is quantitative in nature and heavily relies on statistics to determine what combination of a limited number of attributes is most preferential for customers.

Application

The USE sequence New Product Development & Marketing has two application courses: Innovating by Design and Marketing in Action. You can choose one of these courses as your third course in this USE sequence. The Innovating by Design course further builds your knowledge and skills on the cultural probing method you learned in the specialization course. The Marketing in Action course extends your knowledge and skills on the conjoint analysis statistical method you learned previously.

When you choose the Innovating by Design course, you learn how to use cultural probing to involve customers as a way to discover radical new product and service designs. In addition, you learn how to evaluate and optimize their designs and to reflect on the journey of discovery and design. Initially, the project work will focus on the Smart Environment theme of the TU/e Health Strategic Area, where you will be asked to: a) Investigate the innovation opportunities for building good neighborhoods using cultural probing, and b) Identify design opportunities and come up with a number of radical concepts that can dynamically engage citizens in creating self-empowered and sustainable communities.

When you choose the Marketing in Action course, you learn how the marketing foundations from the first course can be combined with conjoint analysis to come to strategic marketing insights. In other words: how can firms take strategic decisions and define marketing strategies for their products based on insights from market research? After we teach you strategic marketing theory, you are going to apply your learned insights in a new product development and marketing game. The game requires you to interpret market intelligence from marketing research, to develop new products, and to manufacture and launch them in a market with competition from other firms (student teams). It offers you a unique opportunity to practice and improve your decision making capabilities in a realistic but risk-free market setting, before trying them out in a real business environment. The aim is to outperform rival teams.

Started the Bachelor College in 2014 or later? As part of your USE Learning Trajectory, you must participate in 5 Studium Generale activities marked with the EC logo. Important: You can start participating in these activities as soon as you enroll at TU/e.