The relationship between marketing and new product development is the fact that components or factors of marketing are essential in the proper development of new products by any company. That is to say that methods like market research and the testing of a new product are important in order to create a product that will be widely accepted by a target demographic or consumer base. Marketing and new product development involve acts like conducting a survey aimed at helping the company have a better grasp of the developments in the market in particular as well as the industry in general.
One of the initial stages of the development of a new product is the development of a concept for the new product. Such a concept must be based on a perceived need or gap in the market or a strategy like differentiation from other similar products in order to succeed. To identify such a gap, which is also a business opportunity, the company must conduct a comprehensive market research that will serve as its source of information as to the trends in the market and the general preferences of the consumers. This link between marketing and new product development is essential, because if a company produces a new product that people do not need or want, the product might fail miserably despite the best promotion efforts.
An example of the connection between marketing and new product development can be shown by using the illustration of a juice company that is trying to create a new product in the form of another flavor of juice. Such a company will develop the concept for the new juice and then engage in various market research aimed at finding the exact preference of consumers. For instance, the company could organize taste events where random consumers will sample different varieties of the new flavor and rate it based on an established scale. The result of the taste event would give the company an exact idea of the particular mixture or flavor of the juice that the overwhelming majority of the consumers prefer.
The company could also take the marketing and new product development further by test-driving the selected juice on the consumers to find out how people react to the product. This test drive could be in the form of the distribution of free samples with the request that people give feedback on their view of the new product. The feedback will include tips like the consumers' opinion on the design, colors, size and style of the packaging for the new product.