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What Is a Product Line?

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  • Written By: Harriette Halepis
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 15 August 2014
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A product line refers to a number of products that are related and developed by the same manufacturer. Product lines are not to be confused with product bundling, which combines various items into one type of product. Items within a product line generally share the same basic theme, and with the help of a successful marketing plan these products can be entirely effective.

Frequently, a product line includes different products that are offered to the public at varying price points. This way, a manufacturer or company can ensure that all products within a line will be purchased by all kinds of people. Product line extension refers to any additional products that may be added to a current product line.

Most of the time, product extensions are introduced to the public in order to ward off competitors. By creating products that match other, competitive products, manufacturers are able to keep customers interested in a product that they are familiar with. Since most people purchase brands that they know, these same consumers are more likely to purchase a new product from a brand that they are comfortable with rather than purchase a product from an unknown brand.

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Marketers create target markets based upon age groups, geographical locations, and ethnicity. Target markets refer to a group, or groups, of people that are likely to purchase one product. Thus, even though products might be related, some products may look different, smell different, and even appear unrelated in order to appeal to different types of people.

For example, many air freshener manufacturers offer a variety of products ranging from flameless candles, targeted to parents with young children; to simple aerosol air fresheners, targeted to consumers who don't want to spend a lot of money on an air freshener. While these products are related, they are vastly different.

Clearly, a great deal of strategy goes into marketing various products. Marketers must be aware of competition at all times in order to advise manufacturers on new products that should be added to an existing product line. In addition, a marketing agency should be aware of those products that sell, and those that remain unpopular.

Through the collection of statistical data, marketers can effectively determine what products should be kept within a product line, and what products should be phased out. Pricing is used to create a large barrier between different products, and higher-priced products are usually justified based upon certain ingredients.

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Sunny27
Post 3

Cupcake15- Cosmetic companies have even come out with product lines for men too. The Clinique for Men lines offers the same product benefits as the traditional Clinique toner, moisturizer, and facial soap but it is packaged differently to attract male customers.

This product line is completely gray and even has different names. For example, the Dramically Different Moisturizing lotion on the women’s line that is the yellow moisturizer is called M Lotion in the Men’s product line.

cupcake15
Post 2

Greenweaver- I agree with you. Cosmetic companies always offer makeup product lines that also target different consumers.

For example, lip gloss might target younger woman, while matte lipsticks might focus on career women that may not have time to reapply lipstick, therefore seeking a longer wearing texture.

GreenWeaver
Post 1

I would like to add that many cosmetics companies offer various products targeting different sets of consumers in a product line.

For example in the Bobbi Brown cosmetic line there are three different types of moisturizers to target the needs of different customers in its skin care product line.

The Overnight cream is meant as a night time cream that offers cell renewal and exfoliating properties. This works well for someone who wants simple exfoliation with a bit of hydration. Another product called Vitamin Enriched Face Base is a general moisturizer that it used daily under makeup. This product is geared for women that have combination skin and wear make up daily.

The other major moisturizer in the Bobbi Brown skin care product line is the Hydrating Face Cream which is geared toward women with dry skin that need extra moisturizing benefits.

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