Product Development

Product Development

Full product development programs incorporate many different stages or phases of work including Opportunity Identification, Research, Concept Development, Concept Refinement, CAD Geometry Development, Engineering including Manufacturing and Assembly, Color/Material/Finish (CMF), and Production Liaison. Any single phase can be a project in itself, and projects can develop all aspects of a product or focus on single aspects such as product definition, product form, graphical user interface(GUI), interaction design and more.

 

What is the Margaritaville Experience?

What is the Margaritaville Experience?

This is an example of a full development program I was involved in as a full time freelancer at Altitude. As a design team, we defined a Brand Strategy to deliver the Margaritaville Experience. Next, we put that Strategy to the test. The "Fiji" was the first product in the Margaritaville line and had some big shoes to fill. We began our product development effort by clearly defining the Brand Attributes.

 

 

Understanding the Target Market

Understanding the Target Market

Exploring appropriate market segmentation and determining aspirations and motivators are key to being able to target consumer needs. A deeper understanding of your customers leads to addressing needs appropriately and successful product development. This mood board represents a subset of the target audience for Margaritaville.

Understanding the Target Market

Understanding the Target Market

Mapping the separate market segments on a grid demonstrates the relative differences and allows visualization of the "sweet spot" for product development efforts. Overlaying a qualifier or descriptor adds the rationale to make the target clear. In this case, price point for the cost of goods provided rationale to elevate the value proposition for the product and to hone the target..

 

 

Concept Development

Concept Development

After defining product requirements, the exploration begins. Component arrangement determines configurations, touch points drive interaction concepts, and the aesthetic look and feel are driven by these things in combination with the brand attributes.

 

Crushed vs. Shaved?

Crushed vs. Shaved?

Our research indicated that the perfect frozen margarita was created by a technology different than traditional home use blenders.  Consumer blenders "crush" ice into tiny particles. Ice shavers "shave" ice into thin sheets, and hold the alcohol and margarita mix in suspension longer, thereby improving the quality of the drink.. But this technology was only available in commercial products. In parallel to the design effort, we ran an engineering effort to dig in deeper on the functional aspect of things.

 

Shifting Gears

Shifting Gears

As we tested concepts with users, we discovered that our brand attributes were strong, but the perception of value and quality for the proposed concepts needed to be elevated to match the premium price tag driven by the bill of materials required to deliver the experience. Studying analogous experiences refined the strategy to deliver on this updated user need. 

 

Shifting Gears

Shifting Gears

The Brand Attributes and Brand Experience were updated to refine the target and inform concept development.  The new target incorporated authenticity, delivery of a quality result, and less literal interpretation of the restaurant experience to drive higher perception and aspiration to a new higher end market.

Competitive Landscape

Competitive Landscape

Competition is always relative. Though we were delivering a "blender", it was a new kind of specialized blender at a higher price point. A study of the competitive market landscape helped determine where the new concepts had to be positioned to be successful and accepted by consumers.

Positioning Relative to Users

Positioning Relative to Users

Market positioning was now more clearly defined, but how did that affect our market of users? Refining our understanding of the customers helped to drive updated product design requirements.

Brand Essence

Brand Essence

Defining the Brand Essence helped to clarify how the design would deliver the experience to the customers via the product. Translation of these "experience" aspects to physical product is challenging but required step in the process.

Concept Development

Concept Development

An updated set of concepts was developed using the new product requirements and brand attributes. These concepts increased the value and perception of the product, and were targeted to deliver the experience to the user. This step was a turning point for the project.

Concept Refinement

Concept Refinement

The refinement process combines selected elements from a range of the concepts presented.  These are refined and combined to produce the final solution to deliver the experience.

 

Success is in the Details

Success is in the Details

Each aspect and detail of the margarita maker played a key role in delivering the user experience. The authenticity of analog controls draw upon the retro and quality aspects of high end kitchen appliances. The user is in control and this increases the confidence that a quality outcome with be delivered.

Success is in the Details

Success is in the Details

High end materials like glass and metal reinforce the quality and authenticity of the experience. The glass jar with cast details combined with the margarita colored accents are the right touch points to deliver the premium frosty beverage to your glass.

Success is in the Details

Success is in the Details

Manual controls breathe quality and high end feel. To feel in control as you use the margarita maker inspires confidence, and you can "Kick back and relax..." and enjoy the experience as well as the outcome! 

Color Exploration

Color Exploration

A range of concepts were explored to add the finishing touches...Deep midnight blue metallic color is complimented by the glow of the sunset on the horizon on the beach....

Color Exploration

Color Exploration

The icy blue tinted metallic body is complimented by refreshing turquoise blue of the deep ocean at the beach in the islands...

Color Exploration

Color Exploration

And the pearlescent sand colored body color with stainless accents is complimented by the signature color of a frozen margarita at its finest....

Details

Details

Metal accents, weight and heft, glass jar, manual controls, cord storage, easy to use, easy to clean.... And it makes the best frozen margarita around....

A Success Story

A Success Story

....Authentic Experience Delivered...."Kick back and relax...."  That's the Margaritaville Experience. Cheers!

And the story continues...

And the story continues...

Margaritaville and Jarden continue to produce new evolutionary products to expand the horizon.  This is one of the most successful endeavors for Jarden, and the Altitude design team. Cheers to that success!