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In this chapter, we have illustrated a variety of product differentiation and versioning strategies that have been used by businesses. The key points are the following:
- Versioning concepts can be applied to products and services, including new product development, enhancements, digital content, and medical services and devices, and to emerging technologies.
- Some companies focus on versioning at the high end where consumers are less price-sensitive. Some businesses try to offer products across the entire demand curve from price-sensitive Hermes consumers through less price-sensitive Midas consumers.
- Versioning can be applied in a variety of ways including new product development, adding and subtracting features, offering complementary products, and packaging and marketing.
- Versioning also has the potential to be used in delivering medical treatments to a greater number of individuals suffering from serious diseases.
This chapter has illustrated the various ways firms have used to differentiate their products and services in order to compete effectively in contemporary markets. There are three general categories for differentiation. They are the high-end Midas products and services, the mass-appeal Atlas products and services, and the low-end Hermes products and services. There are identifiable revenue benefits for using a product differentiation strategy, but there are also R&D implications. As noted earlier, offering several products permits a company to conduct economic experiments that will help delineate trends in the marketplace and to actually create new markets.