What is New Product Blueprinting?
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  3. What is New Product Blueprinting?

1. The steps in New Product Blueprinting

Summary of Blueprinting steps in B2B front-end of innovation

New Product Blueprinting is an integrated set of methods, tools and skills for the front-end of B2B innovation. New product development teams work their way through the steps shown in the illustration:

Market Research: The team considers several possible market segments (clusters of customers with similar needs) and targets an attractive one to pursue.

Discovery Interviews: The team conducts several qualitative, divergent customer interviews in the target market segment… to uncover as many outcomes (desired end results) as possible.

Preference Interviews: The team data-mines its Discovery interviews and conducts several quantitative, convergent interviews. The customers are asked to rate each outcome on a scale of 1-to-10 for importance and satisfaction.

Market Case: This 2-page report covers 6 sections such as Strategic Fit, Market Attractiveness, etc. In the Value Proposition section, a Market Satisfaction Gap profile shows which outcomes customers are most eager to see improved (high importance and low current satisfaction). For some projects, a satisfactory Market Case is all that’s needed to proceed into the development stage. In other cases, a full Business Case is required.

Side-by-Side Testing: Using customers’ recommended test methods (gathered in Preference interviews), the team conducts competitive benchmarking against competing products.

Product Objectives: The team now has deep insights into customers’ needs and competitors’ capabilities. It uses this to plan a new product design that will be seen by the market as the most desirable.

Technical Brainstorming: Until now, the team has focused on customers’ desired outcomes; now it considers possible solutions to satisfy these outcomes. In this step, the team brainstorms and selects the most attractive technical paths to pursue if/when they enter the development stage.

Business Case: This is used to gain management approval to enter the development stage. It contains 12 sections… the same 6 that are included in the Market Case plus additional sections with more detail on recommendations for the development stage.

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Keywords: New Product Blueprinting, Blueprinting steps, B2B front-end of innovation, Discovery interview, Preference interview, Market Case