In Search of the New Product Launch Process from the Reseller Perspective
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Purpose: It has been proven that a proficient product launch is one of the specific priorities that best separate successful from failed product innovations. However, a majority of existing product launch research takes the supplier’s perspective and focuses on the aspects managed by suppliers, while the role of resellers has been largely overlooked. To contribute to this research gap, the purpose of this study is to investigate the new product launch process from the reseller perspective by taking an exploratory approach. Two research questions were examined in order to increase understandings of reseller new product launches: (1) what is process of the reseller new product launch? (2) What is the role of reseller in new product launches?
Method: Two leading building material resellers in Sweden were chosen as the case companies. Data was primarily collected through open-ended interviews with managers at the central level. In the case of Beijer, a questionnaire was used to collection opinions of managers at the branch level.
Findings: The process of the reseller new product launch can be described in six steps: (1) preliminary agreement with supplier, (2) product/focus group review, (3) launch plan setup, (4) management review, (5) sales of new products, and (6) launch evaluation. The research finding supports the division between strategic and tactical launch decisions. The process of the new product launch includes new product adoption decisions and new product sales at stores. When selecting new products, resellers pay attention not only to product variables, but also to profit and category variables. Providing marketing-, sales-, and merchandising-related services are key roles that resellers perform for suppliers.
Originality/value: First, this study responds to the research demand around launch activity conceptualisation. Second it adds to existing knowledge about the role of resellers.
New product launch, Reseller, Process, Role, Builders’ merchants
Economics and Business
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-88482OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-88482DiVA: diva2:604223