23.5. New Product Forecasting Strategy

NOTE

While there are a number of forecasting techniques available, it is important to realize that not all of them are appropriate for every forecasting situation.

While there are a number of forecasting techniques available, it is important to realize that not all of them are appropriate for every forecasting situation. Qualitative techniques are quite adaptable, but very time-consuming; they would, therefore, not be appropriate in situations where a severe time constraint exists. Quantitative techniques require data, and rely on the critical assumption that current data will correspond to future states; if meeting these requirements is not feasible, quantitative techniques would not be meaningful. Customer/market research tools are time-consuming and expensive to use. Budget constraints could seriously hamper what degree of customer/market research may be applied. A toolbox approach is therefore recommended for applying new product forecasting techniques.

To assist in decisions related to new product forecasting, a variation of the product-market matrix is tailored to reveal four new product forecasting situations (refer to Figure 23.5). Mapping market uncertainty and product technology uncertainty on the two dimensions of current and new reveals four cells, each of which is represented by one of the following new product forecasting strategies: sales analysis, life-cycle analysis, customer and market analysis, and scenario analysis.

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