An Unwanted Product for a Non-Existing Market

Last Update: September 30, 2017

Introduction

One of the main points taught at WA is that you must target your market. That is why we dig deep for niche markets where people are looking for something that we can supply at a profit.

After we find that group of people wanting something and having money to spend, we must reach them. That can be a problem but we are taught here how to solve that problem.

An Unwanted Product for a Non-Existing Market

I was an executive for a Fortune 500 company for many years. I was in charge of research and development and certain engineering areas. I worked closely with design and marketing personal when dealing with new product introductions.

We made prototypes of product and they were submitted to focus groups in the marketplace and received high accolades. Then we introduced the product and it was a total bust–a disaster.

The precept was:

1. There was a group of upcoming individuals, young executives, who liked to entertain but were not ready to invest in fine china.

2. The lower-cost product was attractive and would be an intermediary step toward buying fine china at a later date when these young executives would be more affluent.

The fact was:

1. These folks wanted fine china, not some interim product.

The bottom line was that the product was not wanted and the market did not exist.
So what went wrong?

I don’t remember the results of the focus groups other than that they were very favorable. But what questions were asked? Maybe the question, “Would you buy this product or fine china?” was not asked. That was certainly the defining question.

I also do not know who were in the focus groups. I would think our marketing people would be focused on the market they were after, the niche, and not on the broad market of dinnerware buyers.

Mistakes Many of Us Make

If this seems far fetched to you in regard to what we do, it is not. I see too often folks here focusing on markets that are not true niche markets. Yet true niche markets are not difficult to find simply by digging down through keyword research. Simply probing down into Google Suggest, eBay, Amazon and UberSuggest can lead to good niche markets that are not difficult to reach.

Niche Marketing Areas

Good areas to look for niche markets are Health and Beauty, Make Money (very competitive), Expensive Hobbies and Relationships. There are others.

Dig!

A Final Point

One final point, you should be a member of your niche market. How else can you learn what folks are doing and want? Forums can get you in contact. Niche markets have magazines that service them. Subscribe and look at the classifieds. What adds are repeated in the classifieds month after month? People are buying those products.

John

Note: Thank you to those of you who have offered condolences to me on the life of my wife, Pat, of 64 years. Pat passed peacefully on 19 September.

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DebbieRose Premium
My condolences on your wife's passing.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Debbie!
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SondraM Premium
John, I just read the post of your about planning what we want to do so that we don't waste our lives as our time is limited.

This one is a great follow up post for me to read. First, I'm sorry about the loss of your life long partner. I'm sure you must miss her a lot. Yet, I'm sure she is thrilled to know that you are focusing on how you can help other people.

As I've recently "invested" in some fine china from estate auctions with the intent to resell, I'm glad to see that there is still a market out there for people that want to purchase fine china rather than plastic "china."

I do appreciate the reminder that I need to make certain that I focus my efforts on marketing products for which there is enough of a demand that will allow me to meet my finanical objectives.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Sondra! I have lots of china, of course. It is heavy and many of my kids live a long way away. So I have problems giving Pat's large doll collection and other stuff away. Also, furniture as I'm moving to Ohio.
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SondraM Premium
I hope that you can find a home for her collections with someone that will appreciate the stuff as much as she did.
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TJ Books Premium
I have many grandchildren so I guess there will be no problem. My daughter is taking the bone china. I have two or three other sets.
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cbuffone Premium
Thanks for sharing the insight.

So sorry to hear about your wife`s passing, my condolences.
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TJ Books Premium
You are welcome, Claudio! Thanks and welcome to WA.
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Stella2 Premium
Thank you for sharing your experience, John. It wise of us to learn from the real life experiences of ourselves and others like you who are willing to share.

I am also so very sorry for your loss. Please accept my sincere condolences to you and all affected by Pat's passing.

All the best!
Stella
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Sella. You are very kind. J
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Donnie58 Premium
John, thank you so much for this information.

It's very enlightening.

So sorry to hear about your wife. I didn't know. You have my condolences.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Donny!
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PaulMunns Premium
Hello John, Thank you for the post. There speaks the voice of experience. As a newbie it seems I am still skating on the surface whereas you are diving into the depths.
You have my condolences on the loss of your wife.
Take good care of yourself.
Paul.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Paul!
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Swangirl Premium
Oh John, I am so sorry about the loss of your wife.

My Dad passed away on Sept 19, 2014. I hope you are doing ok.

You are a tough cookie for still plugging away.
Jessica
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Jessica!
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halinphilly Premium
This reminds me of a quote by Kwai Chang Caine (from the TVs series, Kung Fu - starring the late David Carradine):

"I seek not to know the answers, but to understand the questions"

In order to have acquired the most useful results from a focus group, the right questions must be asked t the outset.

My deepest condolences on your loss.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Hal! J
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McWord Premium
Thank you for sharing, T J!

My condolences to you on the passing of your wife. Hope to see you here again soon!

All the best,

mitch
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Mitch!
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delroy2222 Premium
Great post John, thank you. Sorry to hear about your wife.
Thinking of you, especially at this time.
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TJ Books Premium
Welcome, Delroy! You are welcome and thank you!
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delroy2222 Premium
You are welcome John.
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DaveSw Premium
Good information and thanks for that. Condolences for the loss of your wife as well, I know how hard it is to lose someone...Dave
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TJ Books Premium
You are welcome and thank you, Dave!
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Noteboom Premium
Sorry to read about the loss of your wife John, take care.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Johann!
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ATzortzis Premium
Great post dear John, sorry to hear about your wife. Keep strong!
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Anastasio! I'm doing fine. She had enough suffering. John
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SamiWilliams Premium
John,
Thanks for the encouragement in our work. When you are foundering, finding the way for you to take your site is often a question to dig for answers on. Some are answered easily, some take longer.
Blessings on your life.
Sami
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Sami!
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Paul1916 Premium
My condolences to you and your family John
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Paul!
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lynnsam61 Premium
John,
Appreciate your words of advice in choosing a niche. I'm so sorry to hear about your loss - 64 years together is incredible - and I'm sure you're still working through the pain of losing someone so close. The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion is a great book if you haven't already read it. It deals with her personal journey after the loss of her husband and is beautifully written.
Erica
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Erica. You are very thoughtful and I appreciate it.
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vin8 Premium
Sorry to read about the loss of your wife John, take care.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Wayne!
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SongbirdDL Premium
My condolences John. I missed the post. So sorry to hear about Pat.

Thank you for all the nuggets on a niche. You made it so simple.

Take care

~Danielle
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TJ Books Premium
There was no post on her death, Danielle. I thank you! J
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SongbirdDL Premium
Oh, okay, I thought I had missed it somehow. Take care John.
~Danielle
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katzee Premium
Condolences on the loss of your wife, John. Wow - 64 years of togetherness - what a wonderful record. That's a great legacy for your family history.
Thanks for your tips on niche selection - it all helps. I will look in those areas.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Katharina!
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mickeyb123 Premium
Thank you for some well thought out advice from someone who has been 'in the trenches' for a long time.

The fact that it appears you were working in a traditional industry does not change the fact that is actually is the same thing as what we deal with, here.
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TJ Books Premium
Right and Fortune 500 Companies can screw up by wrong thinking.
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mickeyb123 Premium
They do that a lot, don't they?!?
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Stevo55 Premium
Sorry to hear about your wife, John. I know we don't know each other, but I know how important my wife and I are to each other!

And thanks for the info you posted on non-existent markets! Same thing with the EDSEL, right?

Steve
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TJ Books Premium
I was at Ford when the Edsel was still under the tarps. I told them they had missed their market and that the Edsel would not sell. That was the end of my interview. Later, in grad school, I needed a low mileage car at low cost. I bought a "new" Edsel for 500 bucks. It was a great car. I just made sure it had a stick. Thank you! John
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Jimmyk16 Premium
Good information.
Condolences to you and other family members.
Jimmy.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Jimmy!
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mikewood1975 Premium
Sorry to hear about your wife
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Mike! J
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Chezbrown Premium
Thanks for this post John, it was interesting and true.

So so sorry to hear about your lovely wife Pat, sending you my condolences, a tad late but I only just saw this. xxx
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you Cheryl! John
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Chezbrown Premium
You're welcome John. xxxx
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pablocortina Premium
I am sorry to hear about your wife. Hang in there. Your post is great
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TJ Books Premium
Gracias, Hermano!
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pablocortina Premium
De nada.
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SurfsideBob Premium
Wise words John, thank you for the tips. So sorry to hear about Pat.
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TJ Books Premium
Thank you, Bob! My brother has been in the insurance business for many years. He sold off his insurance and estate planning businesses but still works his older insurance clients at age 82. I feel like a lazy bum being retired for over 22 years. John
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