As the market grows, and new technologies develop, the demand and desire for new decisions of old problems raises constantly. People seek ways to improve their life, make it more effective, and manage their sources as time and money in more operative ways. As digital technologies become an essential and important part of the everyday life of an average individual, it is easy to gain people’s trust on the subject of application some new digital technologies to improve their life, make it more up to date, providing them with the opportunities to make fast and grounded decisions. As people’s life is becoming more saturated and fast year after year, new possibilities appear, generating new activities worth dedicating personal time. However, the time is a limited source as well as money.
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Healthcare also has become an issue, as people tend to take care of themselves and their keens, developing a serious attitude towards health monitoring as the understanding that illness prevention is both cheaper than the full-scale treatment, and the whole consequences for general body health are much better if the problem will be detected at the earliest stages.
The affection towards pets is also a big issue in the modern society. The numerous amounts of money spent in the sphere of pet industry all over the world are significant evidence for the fact that people care for their pets and are eager to spend money to make them healthy and happy. For instance, the total amount of money spent on the pet industry in the United States in 2014 is $58.04 billion (American Pet Products Association, 2015, para. 2) with the average ratio rising every year. In New Zealand, the annual amount, spent in the pet industry is $1.58 billion a year, which is a weighty sum considering the total population of New Zealand (Revington, 2012, para. 10).
A large amount of facilities all over Australia that provide dog owners with pet-friendly attitude (Bring Fido, 2015, para 3) allows to make an assumption that the product connected to dogs needs will be successful. Especially if this product is related to dogs’ needs and health specifically aimed to monitor dog’s condition, providing the owner with the information that helps to manage veterinary examinations effectively and thus prevent owners from excessive cost spending.
The new Puppy Health Door (PHD) aims to monitor, log and transfer data considering the measurement of some life systems functional indices. The door functions include simple scanning of puppy’s body to determine any deviations from its healthy state; measuring heartbeat rate and comparing it to the normal heartbeat rate; simple testing for viruses’ detection. All the data is gained while a puppy goes thought the PHD. All the data is sent to the owner’s phone after completing the scanning procedure. The product is designed for the dog owners who care about their pet’s health, want to save money on monitoring veterinary services, and know the exact time when they should take their pet to the vet to prevent a serious illness. In addition, the door has a simple cleaning function that is performed when a puppy goes through the door.
The idea of PHD came through the Australian vet market analysis and the statistics of pet ownership in Australia. According to the official report, 63% of Australian households are homes for pets, providing caring and loving families for more than 25 million pets (Australian Veterinary Association, 2015, para. 6). 39% of Australian households owe dogs as pets. An approximate number of 4.2 million pet dogs gives a ratio of 19 dogs per each 100 people (Australian Veterinary Association, 2015, para. 7). The total amount of money spent in a pet care industry is approximately $8.0 billion per year (Australian Veterinary Association, 2015, para. 11) with the biggest part spent on food. The vet services expenses take the second place. The younger generation seems to pay a big deal of attention to their pet’s health buying pet insurance for their dogs. 27% of Generation Y dog owners by the health insurance for their pets. The fact leads to the conclusion that people care much for their pets’ health.
The new Puppy Health Door will help to save time and money for regular veterinary examinations and prevent serious health disorders by in time providing the data that might evidence some critical deviations in health indices. Taking into account the above data, the new PHD will be popular among the dog-owners in Australia as will provides them with an opportunity of both being constantly aware of their pets’ health and save a significant amount of money for the health care services. The statistical data, stating the age of the average Australian to be 37.3 years (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2015, para. 4) provides a good ground to assume that the product will be popular among the majority of the population.
The strategies for product development in the case of PHD successful implementation include supplementing it with some instruments providing measuring temperature, as the slight temperature change might be a signal for serious health threats (American Kennel Club, 2015, para. 3), simple analysis of urine and excrement composition. General blood analysis also might be performed, but the way of taking samples should be thought out carefully, providing the puppy with a minor discomfort so it would not be afraid to go through the door again later. The same technics of stress reduction should be taken into account, as the function of blood pressure measurement would be implemented. Developing mobile application, providing dog owner with approximate analysis and the features to pay attention to is also a way to develop a product.
The concept testing might include setting a puppy health desk at a dog exhibition, providing free heartbeat measurements for puppy owners, and virus testing an option of sending the information to phone or email can be provided. The gained phone numbers and emails can be applied further as a potential client database. The local event or events for dog owners can also be organized. The event might include dog playground facilities, a dog owners’ conversation zone, thematic presentations and films, fair of organizations, dealing with dogs, including shelters and professional breeding clubs.
The implementation of the product should bear on existing industry that might lead the potential target audience to the idea that using the new product is correct and beneficial. In a case of the puppy health door (PHD), the alliances should be made with professional breeding clubs as the customers who tend to buy an expensive, and a pedigree puppy are expected to take good care of it, not wasting time on paying constant visits to the veterinary service. Alliances also can be made with companies that deal with heart bear measuring equipment, as it is a part of the PHD, and this would create an additional ad both for the PHD in case of implementation of known brand, or for the equipment in case of PHD’s success if the brand is not widely known in Australia. The alliance also can be made to sanitation services and companies that make shampoos and other cleaning products that ecologically friendly and appropriate for puppies, as they can be applied in PHD’s puppy-cleaning function. Animal shelters also can be allies, as a certain amount of PHD can be delivered to shelters for free, providing their staff with the opportunity to scan animals on the condition that all the puppies will be scanned on the day of adoption, and the data will be sent to owner’s phone. Dog exhibition organizers also can be considered as potential allies, as well as all the organizations and associations dealing with dogs and dog breeding.
As all the major public activity dealing with dogs exhibitions and shows in Australia occurs through October until January (DogzOnline, 2015, para. 3), the best strategy to start implementing the new product is next October. This gives eleven months to set the production, and eight to ten month to develop the advertising strategy.
Despite that the device is new and might be treated discreditably initially, the risks seem to be low as many Australians owe dogs, they care about and treat as a full member of the family. The amount of money spent for pet health insurance is good evidence for this fact. People who gladly pay money for what might not happen would pay money to prevent something to happen more eagerly. The total amount of dogs kept as pets in Australia provides a good basis for potential PHD buyers. The implementation of immediate data transfer technology and easy access to this data in case of need provides trust within the society who tend to use digital technologies in everyday life, having access to all the important information through a phone. Quick and easy transferring of this information to the internet that can provide a customer with an approximate diagnosis, and things to pay attention to provides an additional benefit to the product. Comparing the product cost to the total cost spent on treatment in case of non-prevented illness or to regular examination reveals the significant benefits and cost savings for the product owner. The PHD has all the features to become a successful and popular device, but its initial success depends on competent and creative advertisement and implementation campaign that will assure the customer in products reliability. The additional risk can be within the launch date, as people might not pay money they were saving for a vacation.
The product’s cost will be around $1000. If we consider the average price for a single complex consultant as $100 (Lort Smith, 2014, para 3) the cost of the PHD will be recompensed in 10 weeks. It is quite possible that a caring dog owner will scan the puppy every week, or even more often. The approximate number of 4.2 million pet dogs in Australia provides the assumption that even if owners of only one-tenth of this number will purchase the PHD, the total profit will be 0.42*1000 = $42 000.00 million. The active sales are planned to occur from December through March.
The completed and ready to sell product can be effectively tested through breeding clubs and animal shelters. First, free product samples can be vested to breeding clubs as they deal with a significant amount of puppies whose health they have to monitor constantly. The feedback should be accepted as payment. The same strategy should be applied to animal shelters for the same reasons. The message also should be delivered through local dog-owners associations and clubs offering a limited amount of PHD’s for a contact information and feedback as a payment. The candidates should meet certain requirements: they have more than one young puppies, they oblige to examine their puppies through PHD at least once a week, they consult a vet if the deviations revealed through PHD are observed, and they inform the developers on these deviations and the vet’s diagnosis. These requirements are also applicable to associations and shelters.
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The PHD brand should be associated with reliability, availability, medicine, tenderness, and protection. The emphasis also should be made to the originality of the product and the absence of analogs. The combination of reliability and availability should be the key concept of the brand. So, according to Baker and Hart the quality will be the major attribute chosen of four key brand strategy attributes that are quality, superior service, first to market and differentiation (Baker & Hart, 2007, p. 20) we will stake on while developing the PHD brand.
As environmental and sustainability are a priority issues for the modern world and Australia, especially considering its limited sources and growing population (ABC, 2009, para, 7), the packaging should meet all the environmentally, friendly standards, at the same time providing reliable appearance and assurance that the fragile product will not be damaged during the transportation. The outer box should be made of gray unpainted firm cardboard. The outer box should be made that way so it would be easily reused – transformed into a box for storing some puppy staff, or if it remains the storage place for the unpacked PHD, it should be opened and closed easily. It also should have an attractive and pleasant appearance. The inner stuffing material, which prevents the product from damaging should be a porous material made on a recycled-paper basis. Not a foam plastic in a single case, as a puppy can inhale or swallow it. Though the majority of it might pass through the digestive system, some part might cause a blockade, and, considering puppies tenderness and vulnerability, serious health problems. By not applying foam plastic to the packaging of the product aimed to monitor puppies’ health condition, we show that puppies’ health is really important to product developers, and they pay maximum attention towards keeping pets healthy and happy. Considering the least, a small, simple puppy toy, made of non-dangerous organic materials can also be placed into the package-box together with a product.
Who: Australian dog-owners; dog-owners, dealing with puppies. Partially organizations dealing with puppy care.
What: Different ways to reach the target customers will be applied: social media, mass media, personal selling, print advertising, outdoor advertising, sponsorship and allies support (Trott, 2012, p. 14). In the case of PHD, organizers of various dog events will be contacted, as well as heads of animal shelters, the outdoor ads will be placed in the places where dog owners mostly live, social media will be monitored, social media advertising company will start about 3-4 weeks before the launch. The advertising company in magazines and newspapers will start about 2 weeks before the launch. Advertising campaigns will be held on every big dog event in the country.
When: The advertising campaign will start in November 2016. Beginning with spreading information on social media and specialized online sources targeting dog owners. The launch will start shortly after getting positive feedback on the trial PHD’s. It should take the start in November-December as almost all the dog activities will just begin by that time. As it will get hotter, the health concerns including pets’ health will also become an issue. The launch will start around Christmas, and the promotion company will emphasize that the new PHD is the best present for a puppy’ owner. The attribute like puppies in the Christmas socks and under the Christmas tree can be widely applied. As it is a vacation time, the advertising and promotion activities should be held in recreation areas, which are pets friendly, where young families and young people come. The intensive ad also should be held within the districts and regions where families and elderly people, owning dogs live as young children, owning dogs who live separately are most likely come to visit. The advertisements of animal shelters allies should accompany the product ads.
The Plan for the Launch Campaign
- The promo activities should be held on dogs’ exhibitions and other public events that attract the attention of dog owners. The health boards and health drives including a provision of simple free measurements considering health issues for dogs and, particularly puppies should be held. Flyers and info sheets containing information about the advantages of early treatment and the most common puppies’ health problems and the importance of revealing such problems on early stages should be spread within dog owners.
- The advertising should start in three-four weeks before Christmas. Should contain outdoor and TV ads, emphasizing the advantages of preventing pets’ health problems and high fees for vet examination and treatment.
- The active ad company should start in approximately two-three weeks before Christmas emphasizing that the PHD is the best present for a caring dog owner. The ad of animal shelters emphasizing that puppies need new home should go together with the product ad.
- The official launch day should be a week before Christmas, together with rising the ad activity.
- In approximately there month after the launch, the ad should continue together with, the feedback collection and analysis. The conclusions and the further product development strategy should be designed.
Where: The launch will take place at KCC Park Skye, Melbourne, as a Big Day Out For Dogs will be held there just before Christmas (Dogs Victoria, 2015, para. 1). Numerous amount of dog owners are expected to visit the event, and the Canine Christmas market will also take place there.
- To provide the market with a new useful product that can be given to a target customer as a present.
- The hot season, dealing with health concerns, especially for pets has just started.
- To connect the product with the target auditory as close as possible.
- The high season for dog events has just started providing opportunities for additional advertising and reaching the target market.
Australian South East, including big cities like Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney, Canberra and the locations in-between them
The advantages of the product are obvious: dog owners do not spend their time and money for excessive veterinary services, preventing serious health problems of their pets and visit the doctor only in case of need. They also get timely information that might give them early concerns about their pet’s health. Easiness of application, availability and reliability provides significant benefits for owners especially if they are short in time or live in a distant or isolated area and have no possibility to provide their pet with a veterinarian examination regularly.
It the future, the product can be improved with certain functions like blood pressure and temperature measuring, simple urine and excrement analysis, germs detection. Additional mobile and online applications can be designed for the product, listing possible diagnosis and features to pay special attention to. The market also can be spread to other Australian territories, to Tasmania and New Zealand. Actually, New Zealand can be considered as a perspective market for a future product development due to statistical data that states that 77% of dog owners in New Zealand treat their dogs as family members, paying much attention to their health (Revington, 2012, para. 9).
ABC. Our Top 10 Environmental Problems. (2009). Web.
American Kennel Club. Puppy Vulnerability: A Few Things to Know about Your New Dog. (2015). Web.
American Pet Products Association: Pet Industry Market Size & Ownership Statistics. (2015). Web.
Australian Veterinary Association. Pet ownership in Australia. (2015). Web.
Baker, M. J., & Hart, S. J. (2007). Product strategy and management. New York, NY: FT Prentice Hall.
Bring Fido. Pet-Friendly Hotels in Australia & South Pacific. (2015). Web.
Dogs Victoria. Big Day Out for Dogs. (2015). Web.
DogzOnline. Event Diary – Australia. (2015). Web.
Lort Smith. Fees for Veterinary Services. (2014). Web.
Revington, M. New Zealand Veterinary Association. (2012). The pet food market in New Zealand: Effects of changing human demographics and attitudes. New Zealand Veterinary Association. Web.
Trott, P. (2012). Innovation management and new product development. New York, NY: Financial Times/Prentice Hall.