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What is a product concept?

Last updated

18 April 2024

Author

Claire Bonneau

Reviewed by

Mary Mikhail

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Do you have a new and exciting product idea bouncing around in your head? Well-loved products with happy, loyal customers aren’t built overnight. They are born from research, time, and a clear product concept created at the very beginning and followed continuously.

Avoid wasting resources and hone in on your product’s key selling points early by getting serious about your product concept well before you jump into development. Give your team clarity and write a concise and compelling product concept statement that will act as your project’s north star, guiding your team to success all the way through to launch.

Let us help you turn your product daydream into an actual, tangible offering with paying customers by following our guide to creating a product concept statement that outlines your future plans and course of action.

It’s time to get serious about making your next product a success!

What is a product concept statement?

A product concept statement—sometimes referred to as a product concept—is an intentionally written description of a product that hasn’t yet been created.

Writing the product concept during the earliest stages of ideation is best practice. This process should take place long before any product development, prototyping, marketing, or sales has occurred.

Acting as a “product manual,” the product concept statement your team creates for your upcoming product should contain answers to the big questions you need to know before development:

  • The intended target audience

  • Possible product name options

  • What pain points the product is aiming to address

  • Unique product selling points

  • Possible features you plan to add

  • Future launch dates and timelines

  • The overall vision for user experience

  • Business plans and the expected resources needed

The product concept statement summarizes all of these key points. It’s a short and sweet description, sharing the new product’s purpose, target audience, intended features, and value proposition with the business and target audience.

Types of product concepts

Depending on the type of product you are planning to develop, different types of product concept statements will best serve your needs:

Original product concepts

An original product concept is a statement that outlines the creation of a brand-new product that doesn’t currently exist within your company’s brand. It will be a more robust statement, as it has to cover more in-depth information about the product’s unique selling points, target audience, launch timeline, necessary resources, and future plans.

Augmented product concepts

An augmented product concept is a statement about an intended update to an existing product. Common in the tech industry, this type of product concept is usually less extensive, covering only the essential information about planned large-scale feature updates, software adjustments, or service changes.

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Features of a great product concept statement

When writing your product concept statement, you’ll need to include the four primary points below to get the most out of your efforts.

These points act as essential pillars for your future development plan. We recommend including a short paragraph in your product concept statement to address each of these core areas:

Product overview

In the first section, include information about the primary reasoning behind your product, what you aim to achieve with it, and why you are creating it.

This section is also called the “product purpose.”

This overview should paint a clear picture of what the product will be, capturing the essence of its purpose and value without diving into specific details.

Example

“Glossier is developing a new foundation formula that will improve skin hydration while providing medium to heavy coverage. The product will be launched in 2025 and will be available in a wider range of skin tones (including cool and warm tone options in darker shades) to address existing market gaps.”

Target audience

Target audience is one of the most important things to identify during the early stages of your product development. You’ll also need to identify their needs, wants, and pain points.

This information will dictate almost every decision you make before launch. Your team needs to clearly identify your new product’s intended customer base and conduct thorough user research to understand how to best serve their needs.

Example

“Stake caters to young adults aged 21–35 who understand the importance of investing in their future but are unsure of how to start and ‘scared to do it wrong’.”

Intended features

Product features—the added touches and options that will set your product apart from your competition—are easy to get stuck into during the early stages of product development.

Your team needs to be clear about your product’s intended features to effectively showcase its unique selling points.

Focus on the key features your product needs in your product concept statement. Avoid wasting time, resources, and money by leaving the “extras” for future updates or augmented launches down the line.

Example

“The Breville Barista Pro can create barista-level beverages at the press of a button. It uses customizable pods delivered conveniently to the user’s home at no extra cost. This device also uses AI programming to learn your coffee preferences—an industry first—allowing for a more personalized experience with every cup.”

Value proposition

Finally, your product concept statement must highlight the key benefits your product will offer the target audience.

Identifying the value proposition early (with the support of high-quality consumer insights) is one of the best ways to create an impactful and well-loved product from the very start.

Example

“Monday.com is designed for the fast-paced minds of sales and marketing experts. It uses an intuitive UI and easy-to-assign reminder system to help users stay on track and hit their annual sales goals.”

The benefits of writing a product concept

You may be thinking, “But wouldn’t it be better to learn these things about our new product as we go instead of slowing down the process at the very start?” No, that wouldn’t be the best path forward.

If you or your team are wary about “wasting time” by delaying product development, here are just a few essential benefits of crafting an intentional product concept:

It will help your team conduct more detailed product research

Using accurate market research insights from your target audience throughout new product development is essential for creating a cult-classic offering people love.

When you start your product creation journey with a clear, well-articulated concept, your team will understand which of your target audience’s preferences and needs the product’s features will address. They will also discover other areas of information that further research could help uncover.

Using customer surveys creates a consistent flow of qualitative and quantitative user data for your team to analyze. This simplifies your future decisions and planning as you’ll have a sturdy foundation of relevant information on which to base your development strategy.

It will improve your product marketing strategy

Even the best product in the world won’t be successful if its intended audience doesn’t take note of it. To avoid this fate, your team should use a well-crafted product concept statement that acts as a guide for all marketing materials and messaging, powered by helpful user insights, preferences, and desires.

Below are two of the many possible benefits of starting your product development process with a clear product concept:

  • Increased clarity on messaging segmentation

  • Increased ability to personalize user experience

Both of these benefits significantly improve your brand’s authority and customer loyalty in your chosen niche.

It will allow you to better identify your core competitors

Finally, early investment into a strong product concept allows your team to gain helpful insights into the primary competitors in your industry.

Your team will need to analyze the existing offerings in your market to identify possible gaps and pain points that your product can remedy. They will also need to determine which features set your brand apart from the others.

While this may seem trivial, developing a strong understanding of your competitors through early-stage competitive intelligence is a great way to write an effective product concept. It will also improve your marketing and product development strategy.

Examples of successful product concepts

Still not quite sure how to tackle a product concept statement for your next big launch? 

We’ve written a few examples (and entirely hypothetical) product statements for well-known brands to get your creative and organizational juices flowing:

Apple

Here’s a possible product concept statement for Apple’s latest product, the M3 MacBook Air:

“The Apple M3 MacBook Air is the fastest and lightest MacBook to date, created to be a versatile machine for professional work and creative hobbies. Targeting young working adults on the go, the M3 MacBook Air is designed to be portable and versatile.

“Boasting an impressive 18-hour battery life and made with 50% recycled materials, both the 13- and 15-inch options contain the new M3 chip, making it up to 1.6x faster than the previous M1 MacBooks.”

Liquid IV

Liquid IV is a trending health product marketed as a post-workout electrolyte replacement beverage. Here’s a possible product concept statement for the latest sugar-free flavor launch:

“Developed as an extension of our existing hydration products, our new line of sugar-free Liquid IV flavors will offer the same electrolyte benefits as our traditional options without the added sugars. Our sugar-free flavors include raspberry melon, lemon-lime, white peach, and green grape.

“As a great option for people looking to reduce their sugar consumption but still benefit from great-tasting hydration benefits after a workout, this product is marketed toward men and women who are regularly active and committed to their health and fitness.

“Made with zero sugar and zero artificial sweeteners, one stick of sugar-free Liquid IV offers 8x the electrolytes of a regular sports drink and includes eight essential vitamins and nutrients.”

Dovetail

Dovetail is a customer insight hub created to support companies looking to improve their UX research. Here’s a possible product concept statement for Dovetail’s new AI-supported features:

“Created to elevate a user’s experience when analyzing their customer insights, Dovetail now offers powerful AI tools integrated into the platform to act as a helpful research partner.

“Helping to cut back on time wasted on tedious research tasks like tracking and tagging, this feature update was built with busy project managers and marketing executives in mind.

“Offering support with thematic clustering, data summarization, and sentiment analysis, the new Dovetail AI features will help our clients think bigger, achieve more, and get more out of their existing UX research efforts.”

Create a product concept to grow your business

Ready to turn your ideas into a real-life, successful product? 

As tempting as it can be to barrel forward with a new and exciting product idea, brands who take the time in the early stages to nail down the product’s intended purpose, unique features, target audience, and value proposition are significantly more likely to produce and launch a successful product.

A well-written product concept statement sets a clear path ahead and covers all the essential bases. It will be your team’s lifeline and north star through the challenges development will inevitably throw your way.

Use this guide to save time, cut back on wasted resources, and unify your team before your next big product creation. We promise that the time spent writing this statement up-front will be well worth it down the line!

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