The Entrepreneurial Process
In the modern business world, new products are being launched in the market every day. This is being fuelled by the fact that many business corporate want to make optimum profits from their businesses. Because of the prevailing competition, especially in technological advancement and demand for new products by consumers, manufactures have been tasked with responsibility of coming up with new products. The new products are as a result of either removal of faults in the existing products or bringing new innovations in the market. Competition between organizations is very evident. A good example is in electronic technology where companies like Samsung and Apple are racing each other with products such as computers and smart phones.
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However, the procedure of coming up with these new products and have them remain in the market is not easy. An entrepreneur must remain vigilant in the market, and when he spots an opportunity or a problem he can, he should be able to follow the necessary steps successfully to the end to bring his idea to live. This procedure is what is referred to as entrepreneurship and deployment process.
The first step in this process involves Identification and evaluation of an opportunity in the market. For most entrepreneurs, this remains one of the most difficult tasks. Business organizations must remain alert and vigilant in the market in order to identify emerging opportunities. In the corporate world organizations have developed formal mechanisms for innovation identification. These mechanisms include product fault identifications, improvement suggestion from the consumers and business associates among others.
Evaluation and Screening
After an opportunity is identified in the market, it is not a must that the venture will be successful. A second stage of screening and evaluation of the proposed idea is crucial. Each opportunity or a proposed innovation idea must be screened to determine whether the product has got the capability of delivering the required returns in comparison to the required resources. This process involves looking in depth to the uniqueness of the product or innovation, its real perceived value, its projected costs, returns, risks and whether it fits the goals and personal skills of the entrepreneur. The risks to be analyzed at this stage include the market size, technology, competition and legal circumstances involving the product or the innovation. Some of the most important aspects to be included in this stage are discussed below.
Life Cycle Knowledge
Knowledge of a product lifecycle is important during the evaluation stage. This is a detailed description of the diffusion process of an innovation into the society through the adoption concept. This enables the entrepreneur to evaluate the sustainability and profitability of the venture. In the normal circumstances, the adoption of a product follows an S curve and the main objective of an entrepreneur should be to build an S curve after another if a product is to be sustainable. This should be implemented simultaneously in the analysis of the product/innovation and the business lifecycle.
Source of funds
Before a product/innovation can be rolled into the market an entrepreneur should source funds to create it. This fund will be used to cover development costs, market researches and product design. The risk at this point is usually considered high since the company does not generate any revenue. This stage requires the entrepreneur to test the feasibility, demonstration, verification before commercialize of the product.
In real life world there is always a risk of producing a product or innovation that has been done by other entrepreneur. Through all these stages one should ensure that the product or innovation he is dealing with is not an intellectual property.
An intellectual property refers a creation of somebody’s mind. It includes literally and artistic works, names, images, symbols, invention, and designs used in commerce. It is divided into two categories: copyrights, which include artistic works such as music works, drawings, photographs, sculptures, paintings and architectural design; and industrial properties like trademarks, geographic indication of the source and inventions. Therefore any entrepreneur should register any intellectual property he she has developed to prevent other people from benefiting from the innovation. Intellectual property should be protected at this stage to ensure that a business maintains a competitive advantage in the market as well as prevent it from misuse by unauthorized persons.
Marketing and Commercialization
Once the product has been registered as an intellectual property, the company can embark on sourcing for production of the product. Since the profitability of the product has already been analyzed, funds can be sourced from various sources. If an innovator does not have reserved capital he can opt for a loan or get funding from other organization. If Fund are not available, then his product can be kept until such a time when the funds are available or the intellectual right can be sold to another investor.
When the product finally enters the market, the main challenge to an entrepreneur is to create and generate market awareness of the product or service. This calls for additional funds to be used in advertising the product in broadcast media and print. Advertising is as well important in creating preferences in the target market. This gives way to publicity of the product even to more targeted Medias such as social media which allow sharing of information.
Nearly all the products in the markets have competitors. Competition occurs during the product’s midlife stages. At this stage consumers view a product advertisement with a lot of skepticism and it is only a word of mouth and social media that has adequate impact.
Established products pose a big challenge of maintaining the awareness. A good illustration of this can be seen with coca cola and Chevrolet. Awareness can be done through advertisements. Advertisement also creates a new opportunity of fetching new customers entering the market.
In a business cycle, services and products eventually reach a point of diminishing returns. At this stage the media uses declines unless an entrepreneur is able to come up with a better product or an innovation. This starts the whole cycle again. At each stage a business will be concerned with the choices relating to preferences, awareness, the demand and the purchase decision.
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