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I believe I've heard a word for it, but I can't remember.

If I start a business with some partners, and we are going to produce multiple products in the future, our first one would be called...

Some words that aren't quite what I'm looking for would be:

  • Flagship - Our flagship product would be our most important one.
  • Virgin - doesn't seem to fit
  • Spearhead - One can spearhead a project by leading it, but I don't know that a product can be the spearhead project, can it?

Sample Sentence: Glad to call our first business meeting to order; we will be launching our (word) board game this fall!

  • 1
    Maiden product? Where are using this bon mot? – Yosef Baskin Jul 17 '17 at 17:01
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    Had to look up bon mot... maiden is not bad! It is for a board game company. Wasn't sure if that mattered for the word request, although I suppose if it were a boating company, it might. – Jeff Jul 17 '17 at 17:15
  • 'This tag is for questions seeking a single word that fits a meaning. To ensure your question is not closed as off-topic, please be specific about the intended use of the word. YOU MUST INCLUDE A SAMPLE SENTENCE demonstrating how the word would be used. Please use the "phrase-requests" tag instead if you seek more than just a single word.' – AmE speaker Jul 17 '17 at 17:37
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    Would it be your debut product? – jejorda2 Jul 17 '17 at 18:34
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    Premier, perhaps? Although I guess that could be confused with meaning "best." – cole Jul 17 '17 at 20:37
7

Great question!

I think this is the word:

inaugural - marking the beginning of a new venture, series, etc.: the inaugural run of the pony express. (Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary)

inaugural - Initial; first: the inaugural issue of a magazine (American Heritage Dictionary)

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/inaugural

inaugural - marking a beginning: first in a projected series (Meriam Webster)

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/inaugural

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    Prototype is another word, with a slightly different meaning, but I think inaugural is better. – Mike Harris Jul 17 '17 at 17:12
  • @Shokhet - Thanks so much for catching my (rather embarrassing) typo! It's good to know that other members have my back. ;o) – Mark D Worthen PsyD Jul 18 '17 at 6:46
  • Oh, my pleasure! That's what peer-editing is all about on Stack Exchange. Congrats on earning the association bonus, by the way; I'm sure seeing about 2000 points on the top bar was something of a surprise (but I think you earned it) :D – Shokhet Jul 18 '17 at 15:13
  • Yes it was! And thank you very much. :0) – Mark D Worthen PsyD Jul 18 '17 at 15:48
1

There are different ways one could approach this question. It seems like others are doing a great job giving you interesting synonyms for first - any of which could carry your intended meaning.

So, instead of repeating what others are saying I am going to take a more business-focused approach to answering this questions. To begin with, most experts advise businesses to focus on what the market needs not on what product they have, for the very simple reason that what is going to sell is what people want. Sometimes a startup might begin with a product that someone developed for his own use, but then realized that others might want to use that product, too. But even then, the focus quickly turns to who wants this product and how to enhance this product to give people exactly what they want, or at least the best cost-benefit ratio to the seller of what people will be willing to pay for? The business through its products is really meeting the needs of a certain market niche, and the ability of a business to meet the needs of a certain market niche can be described as that business's core competencies.

core competency: a defining capability or advantage that distinguishes an enterprise from its competitors. - Google

The corresponding word for core competencies when referring to products is core products:

Core products are a company's products which are manufactured from the company’s core competencies. These core products are then integrated into other products by the same company or a company which produces the main end product from this core product and the end products are marketed to the end consumers.

Generally core product gives the main benefit of the product. But many more things are added to it to add value to the product. This leads to the conversion of core product to actual product and then augmented product. So, augmented product gives final complete product to the customer.

So, from the link above, one can see examples like Microsoft - core product being the Windows OS, but an actual product might be Windows 2015, and then there are all the augmented features which Microsoft also includes which ends up being part of the final product that Microsoft ultimately sells to the customer. Augmented features can include many upsell items like extended warranty, extended or premium customer support, etc.

So already you are probably understanding that one cannot simply say other products. Are you talking about the same core product but different versions of the actual product like how Windows 2014 might differ from Windows 2015? Are you talking about different augmented features that will ultimately be a part of your complete product offering? As you can see, in many cases new products are really a part of expanding the product offering around the existing fundamental, core product.

Or, are you talking about other products that are outside the existing core competencies which the business will have corresponding to its first core product? This is generally not advisable as successful businesses tend to cluster products around the same set of core competencies and businesses tend to struggle when they try to offer products outside their core competencies.

New Product Development (NPD) will take in to account the consumer’s preference for benefits over features by considering research into their needs. NPD aims to satisfy and anticipate needs. NPD delivers products which offer benefits at the core, actual and augmented levels.

So, my answer is that a business's initial product is also defining its core product in that the business builds its initial core competencies around this initial product. It is important for businesses to consider whether additional, future products are complementing these core product competencies or whether these future products are outside of existing core competencies, which a business will generally want to avoid.

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