New products are the engine of growth for consumer electronics. Every six to eighteen months, faster, better, and cheaper hi-tech appliances, gadgets, and computational devices are introduced in the market. Although the consumer always benefits from the latest and greatest products, forecasting for high technology and other industries with very short product life cycles is a challenge even for the most experienced brand managers, market researchers, and sales forecasters.
In recent years, market dynamics have significantly changed, and so has the shape of the product life cycle. Due to the advancements in the social media technologies such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, marketers now spend more of their budget in the pre-launch phase, which compresses much of the adoption phase of the product life cycle into the first month of product launch.
This radically changes the shape of the product life cycle from a classic S-shaped curve to a more free-form curve, which peaks much earlier in the product life cycle than before. RoadMap GPS allows forecasters to develop product roadmaps, gather competitive intelligence, and deploy collaborative planning systems to accurately forecast the demand of new products, particularly of those that have a very short product life cycle.