Articles - Getting product launches right is key to success in 2012

 Financial services outsourcing company OPAL today warned that getting product launches right will be a key success factor for financial services firms in 2012. With budgets being squeezed, regulatory pressures at an all time high and consumer confidence at an all time low, an unsuccessful product launch could prove disastrous.

 With this in mind, Tony Collins, chairman at OPAL, the financial outsourcing company, gives some tips on how to get a product launch right;
 • Speed to market; with heightened competition among retail banks and extra pressure to create new types of products to adapt to shifting consumer demand, speed of delivery to the marketplace is now crucial to the success of both individual products and an overall product strategy.
 • Adaptability; the changing coverage needs of consumers and the emergence of new types of sales channels, means that the banks need to improve not only the speed, but also the quality of the products they deliver.
 • Regulation; regulation is becoming a key concern for not only high street banks, but most financial services providers. With consumer confidence in FS products at an all time low, make sure that your product does what it says on the tin, which should not be an issue if the initial product design is correct.
 • Marketing; misleading customers on potential returns in any marketing collateral will be viewed dimly by the FSA. Targeted, effective marketing, especially in the lead up to RDR is crucial.

 Collins concludes;
 “Financial services companies need to be strategic and structured in their approach to launching new products in order to keep up with the‘Perfect Storm’ of low investment returns, high inflation and consumer mistrust of the industry. It is clear that alongside brand and service it is also the speed at which the company brings products to the market that will help create and maintain a market-leading position for financial services brands.”

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