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4.10 Version Rollout Strategies

Many companies start by introducing and designing the mass-appeal or Atlas product first. The objective is to get the product out the door and generate as much revenue as possible by setting the price and developing the features in such a way that profit and cash flows are near the optimum level. That was the strategy used by Joan’s jewelry. She then introduced a high-end Midas version to attract affluent consumers. This is sometimes followed by introducing a scaled-back Hermes version with easy-to-produce features after the production process has been fine-tuned. Some businesses introduce a low-end Hermes product at the same time that the Atlas and Midas versions are introduced. Their objective is to use the low-end version to attract buyers to the mass-appeal and high-end products. Sometimes, a version is given away or is offered on a try-and-buy basis. This is referred to as a freemium version.

The key consideration is to design products and services so that features can be easily added and subtracted and new versions can be quickly introduced. This of course implies that the producer will use modular design approaches and agile production processes in product development.