Tag Archives: New product development

Thoughts On Market Research Data Integration Approaches

By: Mike Page,
Blueocean Market Intelligence Vice President – Client Development and

How does the MR industry keep pace with the overall business
intelligence market in terms of developing an integrative approach? While you
could argue that it is a different discipline, it is still the voice of the
consumer within a business, so the data should be simpler to integrate and use.
A better way to think about this is to think about the flow
of information from one channel to the other ‘ specifically from MR to business
intelligence or vice versa. At the Data Matters conference Martin Hayward made
a very important point. He said: ‘We work from what you did outwards to why you
did it.’ Most market research works from questions about why you do things and
try to predict what you will do. Surely within this there is an optimal model
that will help you ask only the most pertinent questions in the most pertinent
way and not waste effort on information that is better sourced elsewhere.
Here are some examples of how an integrative approach can be
more efficient and help to realize the savings that so many people believe are
out there.
Savings from
redundant research

Organize different research under the same platform to
achieve synergy. By combining various product/concept test research, you are
often able to answer new business questions and eliminate funding superfluous
research. Synergy is obtained through combining data: a) from different time
periods (trending) or b) across product/brands/concepts/ business units.
Better insights from
linking different sources of research data

Additional synergy can be captured from across product
linkages as well as trending. As a case in point let’s use chocolate. Across
the board men associate chocolate with comfort; whereas women associate it with
indulgence, which has great implications for how you communicate with them. 
While an individual study may provide the same information about a specific
concept (e.g., a white chocolate with a bitter orange flavor), we would not
know that, in general for women, chocolates are tied to indulgence. With
respect to trending, only by linking and creating a trend line for appeal, will
we know that chocolate has, over the years, consistently lost appeal among men
but not among women.
Research redundancy

We can also think in terms of research redundancy. If we
asked a question within a category ‘ such as customer satisfaction or new
product development ‘ we are building a picture of the consumer that can be
looked at across the surveys, we conduct. For example, how many times have we
ever asked a certain question and how has the context or relevance of that
question changed over time. From our own experience we have databases with over
half a million responses that show no or little change over time. Using this
knowledge in a structured and data-centric way can give us the tools we need to
manage our research process more effectively and ensure we don’t duplicate
efforts in our research or collect information that is perhaps better captured
elsewhere for the sake of it.
Data sharing

There are equally opportunities for data sharing. If many of
the data points that we collect are static, why should data not be shared in a
way that will, while ensuring confidentiality, provide researchers and their
clients with a window on what is genuinely different and what is genuinely
insightful from a research study. For example, if we know that the primary
driver of purchase intent is age, regardless of the product being tested, then
why do we not analyze what we already have to make a better-targeted research
study and avoid duplication of effort?
Linking research data
with other sources of data

For this let’s take an example looking at doctors’
prescription patterns for a new drug. By linking satisfaction and effectiveness
data to prescription data you can provide insights regarding both optimal
quantity of sales calls as well as the quality of messages to a particular
doctor. So if you know that cardiologists tend to write more prescriptions when
the salesperson is able to demonstrate ‘knowledge and competence about the disease
state and product benefits’ whereas the oncologist writes more prescriptions
when the salesperson could show that ‘he/she cared about the physician’s
business practice’. These types of insights lead to better understanding of
what drives volume and share of prescriptions for different drugs.
In conclusion, it is easy to see how an MR strategy that is
not aligned with other business information streams in a seamless way can make
you spend money that you don’t need to. My advice to those who do not believe
this is to conduct an audit to find out where and by what means each piece of
the research puzzle can be best answered, and by what channel, before another
research study is begun.
You’ll be surprised by what you find and how much you can
save with an integrative research 
Parts of this entry
were originally published under ‘A waste of time and money’ on Research Live.com.

Blueocean Market
Intelligence is a global analytics and insights provider that helps
corporations realize a 360-degree view of their customers through data
integration and a multi-disciplinary approach that enables sound, data-driven
business decision. To learn more, visit www.blueoceanmi.com.

Live from #TMRE14: New DIY Launch Powered by Google

Corrine Sandler
A new DIY survey
research offering powered by the Google Consumer Surveys (GCS) platform launched
today in a track session GCS headlined at TMRE.
Validateit’ by MR firm Fresh Intelligence automates the
survey research process all the way through to a final report issued in as few
as five business days after the survey fields.
Three of four modules oriented around product development are
currently available’IdeaRank, PriceCheck, and DemandCheck’with a name testing
module soon to be released.
Click here to watch 40-second videos about the modules.
Validateit has been in development for two years and the
underlying methodology was created by Ph.D. researchers and statisticians, according
to Fresh Intelligence CEO Corrine Sandler.
Sandler explained that users can design and program a Google
microsurvey in about 60 seconds simply by answering a few questions.
The $1500 price includes the questionnaire, 250 respondents,
data collection and a one-page executive report.
Users will not have access to the actual questionnaire,
which Fresh Intelligence considers intellectual property, Sanders said.
Sample is currently domestic U.S. gen pop only, but Google’s
Monica Plaza, who co-presented, noted that GCS can customize sample, so expect
to see that feature in the future as well as access to international
For more information, visit: www.validateit.com


Marc Dresner is IIR USA’s sr. editor and special communication project lead. He is the former executive editor of Research Business Report, a confidential newsletter for the marketing research and consumer insights industry. He may be reached at mdresner@iirusa.com. Follow him @mdrezz.

Formulas for (Market Research) Success

On Day 1 of FOCI, two of my favorite speakers shared formulas
for describing important concepts. Are formulas always perfect? No. But they do
give us a fresh way think about some complex issues. And these formulas may even help us to be inspired by this conference’s tag line, “Think Harder.”

Formula for Thinking Harder #1

Bill Grizack,
Executive Director at Egg Strategy, gave us a formula for understanding how to
help new ideas succeed. As Bill described it, ‘Ideas have mass and velocity.
And if an idea has enough mass and velocity, it has momentum.”  Applying the classic physics formula Mass x Velocity
= Momentum.

As I listened, I couldn’t help but think that this applies to
us market researchers in two ways:

It applies to how we think about product concept
testing. In these projects we are often seeking to prioritize product
attributes or gauge overall alignment with market needs. But listening to Bill,
it seems like part of the process should also include uncovering attitudes or
behaviors that might help an idea have ‘mass’ and ‘velocity.’  Can we think about how to structure research to
uncover likely mass and velocity factors? Could this broaden current thinking
which often focusses on ‘demand drivers and deterrents’?

It applies to market research itself.  It often seems like we have a lot of great
ideas for market research innovation, and that they have big mass, but not
enough velocity’and thus no real momentum. 
How can we think about the velocity part of the equation to help us finally
get momentum on some of these ideas? Or at least to understand which of the
many ideas are likely to succeed based on existing ‘velocity’ indicators?

Formula for Thinking Harder #2

Our opening night keynote speaker, Nir Eyal of NirandFar.com, shared his formula for
changing behavior. Nir stated, ‘If we have sufficient motivation and sufficient
ability AND you have a trigger, the behavior should occur.’ He summarized this
with the formula: Behavior = Motivation + Ability + Trigger (which he
attributed to BJ Fogg).

Now while he didn’t specifically connect this to market
research, I think this also gives us a framework to think about product concept
testing research. We often struggle when researching products that are
revolutionary (versus evolutionary). We researchers know very well that you can’t
get good insights by asking people for direct feedback on radically new product
concepts: it tends to be too hypothetical. Sure we can use research to identify
potential drivers and deterrents for radical product ideas, but it’s risky.

But what if we used Nir’s angle? When researching revolutionary
products, we could structure parts of the research to discover potential
motivations, abilities and triggers of interest. It would still be a bit hypothetical,
but the idea of using a framework consisting of three distinct components
appeals to me. We could even go as far as asking the customers (people from the
likely target market) to help us brainstorm motivations, abilities and triggers’now
that is a project I would like to try!

What About You?

I wonder what formulas market researchers could come up with.
What’s the formula for project success? What’s the formula for panel quality? Or
for executive satisfaction with research insights? If you want to propose any,
let us know using the comments below.
This post was written by Kathryn Korostoff. Kathryn is currently the President of Research Rockstar, the only
independent company dedicated to market research training (online and
in-person).  Prior to Research Rockstar,
Kathryn completed the transition of Sage Research’an agency that she led for 13
years’to its new parent company, Chadwick Martin Bailey. Over the past 25 years, she has directed more than 600
primary market research projects and published over 100 bylined articles in
various magazines, including Quirk’s Marketing Research Review and the MRA’s
Alert! Magazine. She also currently serves as President for the MRA’s New England

Contact Information: KKorostoff@ResearchRockstar.com,
508.691.6004 ext 705, @ResearchRocks

How to Build Habit-Forming Products in Four Steps

Can New Model Help Get Respondents Hooked on Research?

By Marc Dresner, IIR
Email, Facebook, Twitter’most of
us engage in one or more of these and other, similar types of pursuits every
day, usually many times a day, without fail and typically without being
prompted to do so.
Some of these activities we can justify.
Maybe not Angry Birds, but we all
need email, right? Our jobs demand it.
Even on vacation’with autoreply’when
all projects and accounts are in safe hands and you’ve dotted all the i’s and
crossed all the t’s before walking out the door’
Let’s be honest: Do you tell your
colleagues not to email you while you’re away on vacation or is it usually the
other way around?
My boss once threatened me with
an additional week of vacation if I emailed
her again from whatever beach I was suffering on.
And I’m not even a workaholic.

Sometimes, it’s not a
matter of choice; it’s an inescapable compulsion.

Deprivation studies show that separating someone from their smartphone for just one day produces intense anxiety

Indeed, deprivation studies show time
and again that when separated from one’s favorite device’usually a smartphone’for
even just a single day, people frequently experience intense anxiety.

Nir Eyal refers to the apps and
such to which we as a society seem increasingly tethered as ‘habit-forming

products somehow draw us to use them’It’s unprompted engagement.’
Nir Eyal

‘These products
somehow draw us to use them,’ said Eyal. ‘It’s unprompted engagement. They
don’t necessarily say, ‘Hey, come open this app,’ and yet we still take out our
phone and do it anyway.’

short, a ‘habit’ occurs with some regularity and usually with little or no
conscious thought.
And in his new book, ‘Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products,’ Eyal explores the how and why behind this
behavior and introduces a model for developing products that cultivate it.

pattern that habit-forming technologies take time and again is a four-step
process: the ‘Hook Model’

process, the pattern that we see habit-forming technologies take time and time
again is a four-step process I call the ‘Hook Model,” Eyal told The Research Insighter.

‘The Hook Model is very
simply an approach to connect your user’s problem to your solution with enough
frequency to form a habit,’ he added.

could the Hook Model be applied to increase research response and cooperation?

this should appeal to anyone in product development for obvious reasons, geek
that I am, I couldn’t help but wonder how the Hook Model might be applied to increase
research response and cooperation.

To what
extent do we see Hook Model principles effectively used in some of our more
engaged panels and research communities?
these principles be introduced with minimal risk of biasing sample?
In this
interview with The Research Insighter‘the official podcast series of the Future of Consumer Intelligence conference’we’ll review:
‘ The four-step
process for getting someone ‘hooked’
‘ The
roles frequency and perceived utility play
‘ How
to increase the habit-forming potential of a product or service, and much more’

Editor’s note: Nir Eyal will present ‘Designing Habit-Forming Technology‘ at The Future of Consumer Intelligence conference taking
place May 19-21 in Universal City, CA.

As a loyal reader of this blog you will SAVE 15% on your registration to attend The Future of Consumer Intelligence when you use code FOCI14BLOG today!

For more information or to
register, please visit www.futureofconsumerintel.com 

Want to hear more from Nir Eyal? Check out his blog: NirAndFar.com.
Marc Dresner

Marc Dresner is IIR USA’s sr. editor and special communication project lead. He is the former executive editor of Research Business Report, a confidential newsletter for the marketing research and consumer insights industry. He may be reached at mdresner@iirusa.com. Follow him @mdrezz.

Spearheading Innovation – How to Generate Consumer-Centric New Products Webinar

60-80% of all newly introduced products are no longer on the shelves about one year later – causing an tremendous value destruction for companies, trade, and shareholders.

This Webinar will introduce you to the logic of a simple model, called ‘The Spearhead’ ‘ a systematic process how to transform consumer insights into consumer-centric product concepts that actually sell in the marketplace. Following this logic has proven to produce successful product concepts, thus reducing the percentage of in-market failures.

The producers of the Shopper Insight in Action Conference invite you to join Prof. Dr. Hans-Willi Schroiff to learn:
- How to build a ‘Consumer Learning Plan’
- How to distill relevant ‘Anchor Themes’ from the sea of knowledge
- How to transform an anchor theme into a set of creative new product concepts
- How to select and improve a winning concept
- How to test product concepts

 Register here: https://cc.readytalk.com/r/q5h2vt9bgja4&eom
 Mention Priority code: M2615w1blog

Date: Thu, Feb 13, 2014
Time: 10:00 AM EST
Duration: 1 hour
Host(s): Shopper Insights in Action

Presenter Information

Prof. Dr. Hans-Willi Schroiff joined the RWTH School of Business and Economics as a faculty member and Honorary Professor in 2002, where since then he teaches BA/ MBA courses all year round. Besides that, he is a frequently invited lecturer/ speaker at top business schools in Europe and in the US (e.g. Tuck School of Business, Harvard Business School, London Business School, European School of Management and Technology – Berlin, INSEAD Fontainebleau etc.).

He is the author of numerous publications and a keynote speaker at business conferences in Europe and in the US. From 1999-2008 he served as an Executive Council member of the Marketing Science Instititute (MSI) in Boston. Prof. Schroiff is on the Advisory Board/ Board of Directors of several international market research companies, such as Dialego and YouGov Germany. In the beginning of 2013 he became a co-founder and managing partner of MindChainge, an international consulting firm focusing on consumer-centric innovation.

A Conversation with Dan Pink

Interview conducted by Ideas To Go Facilitator Katie Konrath on July 5, 2013′originally printed in the Ideas To Go July, 2013 Newsletter

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 1 of every 9 Americans is in sales. But in his latest book, New York Times bestselling author Daniel Pink takes the stance that, no matter their job title, everyone is involved in sales’because we’re all ultimately in the business of persuasion.

I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Dan about what he learned in writing To Sell Is Human, which helps companies to better understand their customers.

Katie: In To Sell Is Human, you write about how sales has changed dramatically from the stereotypical door-to-door salesman. So what is the biggest thing affecting how consumers make a purchasing decision today?

Dan: The biggest change, by far, is that consumers have way more information than they ever had before’and in many cases, they have as much information as the seller. That changes everything. It used to be that the whole world of sales was defined by information asymmetry, where the seller had more information than the buyer. Now, that information asymmetry is disappearing’it’s not gone entirely’but it’s disappearing. To me, that is the single biggest change: the move from information asymmetry to something at least approaching information equality.

Katie: You also say that information is moving from problem-solving to problem-finding when it comes to persuasion these days. Why is that so important?

Dan: Well, it actually goes very much to your first question. Let’s say that you’re a seller. It used to be that a seller, having access to information, had an edge. But now we all have access to information. So if I’m a buyer, I may know precisely what my problem is without a seller.

Take my office for example’I work out of a refurbished garage of the house. Suppose that I have a burnt-out light bulb. I don’t need a salesperson for that’I just find out what kind of light bulb it is, and order it. I don’t need anybody to solve my problem’I can find a solution on my own. So a salesperson isn’t valuable to me. Where a salesperson is valuable to me, is when I discover the light bulb isn’t really my problem. Say my problem ends up being that I have a screwed-up electrical system, which I didn’t know.

Sellers are more valuable when people don’t know what their problem is, or they’re wrong about their problem. That’s why problem-solving matters less today than problem-finding. Solving existing problems matters less than identifying problems people don’t realize that they have.

Katie: Another thing I found interesting in the book was your example of the software company whose software engineers interacted with their consumers. It wasn’t just consumers, and sellers, and software engineers all in isolation. What do you think is so valuable about that? 

Dan: I think it leads to better results for customers. If you have engineers who understand how their customers are actually using the product, who are sitting with them and getting their reactions in real time, then that product is going to get better’much faster. That kind of metabolism is different from the traditional metabolism where: first a customer uses a product, then maybe 6 or 8 months later you might do a survey, then you tabulate the survey, and then you interpret the survey. Interacting directly with customers just creates a much faster metabolism of improving products.

Katie: So, if you have the software engineers approaching the customer’or people within the organization for product development’you said they shouldn’t approach it from a ‘high-power’ perspective, right? 

Dan: Well, it depends. There’s evidence showing that there are some times’not every time’when reducing your feeling of power can actually increase your effectiveness. By reducing your own feeling of power, there’s evidence that you become better at taking someone else’s perspective at that particular moment. I don’t suggest uniformly reducing your power in every circumstance, but at certain times, it can make you more effective.

Because once you increase the acuity of your perspective-taking, and then see someone’s perspective more clearly, you’re much more likely to find common ground.
Finding common ground and seeing someone else’s perspective is extremely important now, because there’s less coercive power in:

1) the marketplace’because buyers and sellers are evenly matched on information, and
2) companies’because bosses are slightly less dictatorial and/or controlling than they were, say, 25 or 50 years ago.

Katie: So let’s say we want to develop a product, and we’re having a group of customers come in. We’re going to talk to them, and we want to get their feelings’how do we reduce our feeling of power? 

Dan: Okay, let’s say you’re a very accomplished engineer, you have this consumer product, and you’re dealing face-to-face with a customer who’s trying it out. The product is very easy to understand if you are a well-educated engineer. You have an advanced degree, you’ve got 800s on your math SAT, and the person coming in is just a regular Joe like you and me. It’s easy to feel very powerful in this situation. After all, they’re testing your product.

They didn’t come up with it’you came up with it. But, you really have to reduce your feeling of power in that moment and recognize you need that customer a lot more than that customer needs you. Even though you might have a better education, that customer’s opinion matters a lot more to you than your opinion matters to him or her. And so it’s really about recalibrating your notions of power, and recognizing that’in many cases’the other person needs you a lot less than you need him.

Especially when there’s a kind of hierarchical imbalance creating a different power dynamic, just reducing your feelings of power in that moment can increase your ability to see the other person’s perspective, which actually increases your effectiveness.

Katie: I think that’s interesting for marketers to think about’because you’ve been studying these consumers’and know everything about them’then the customers actually come in. How do you react? 

Dan: Right. Another way to look at this is a word that comes out when I interview really accomplished salespeople: humility. There’s all sorts of research in the management literature’Jim Collins has written about his own research’there’s other research that both Adam Grant and Bob Sutton have done, essentially showing that humility is a very important leadership and management skill.

And in some sense, what we’re talking about here is just that. It’s to be humble. Not ‘fake humble,’ like a lot of people do, but genuinely humble, and recognize”Hey, you know what? You actually need this person. This person has a lot of power. This person’s opinions really matter.’

If this person doesn’t like the product, your livelihood might be at risk’so you’d better take this person seriously, and you’d better listen acutely to what they have to say.

Katie: I love that’especially because in the area of big data now, companies know so much about consumers. 

Dan: You know, you have to be humble in the face of big data, too. There’s going to be a lot of hubris and overconfidence with big data. There are going to be some colossal mistakes made, based on big data.
Katie: What do you think about that? How do you think so?
Dan: I think big data has a ‘flavor of the month’ feel to it right now.

We tend to think that any complicated question can be answered with reams and reams of data’and that’s sometimes true, but sometimes not. A lot depends on the quality of the data that we get. Some of it is going to depend on how we collected that data. And, how do we interpret it? Are we asking the right questions about it? I think that big data is actually a big deal’I don’t want to dismiss it.

But I feel like it’s something everyone is going to be going crazy over for two years, then recognize the limits of it. There’s going to be kind of a big data bust’then in 10 years it’s going to be an even more significant part of how we operate.

But ultimately, one needs to be humble since data itself doesn’t have any kind of feelings or soul. One has to approach the data itself with humility about what it actually reveals, and about our capability of interpreting, as well.

Katie: So, while talking about having humility, you also talked about having empathy for your customer’or being able to take her perspective. What do you think the difference is, and what’s more valuable? 

Dan: Well, they’re both valuable. It depends on what you’re doing. I think that in something like product design, empathy is extraordinarily valuable’in many ways, more valuable than perspective-taking. Again, empathy and perspective-taking being very, very similar’but not identical.

When you get to a kind of transaction, or negotiation, the evidence shows that focusing on peoples’ interests and thoughts is often more valuable than focusing only on their emotions and feelings. So ideally, what you want is both channels of information, but the reality is we’ve got such heavily cognitive loads that we often can’t keep that all in mind.

So in a negotiation–if you have to do triage’focus on thoughts and interests, because that’s what the research shows. But I think in product development’particularly with consumer products’I would lead with empathy.

Katie: And then maybe by figuring out how to talk about them, we’ll go with more of their perspective?

Dan: That’s actually a really good point. I agree with that.

Katie: So my last question is about an example in your book of what we would call ‘assumption busting.’ It’s where you gave someone an object, and asked them to pretend they were describing it to someone either way in the future, or way in the past’and how that would change their assumptions about it. What do you think about that exercise, and about how it works to change people’s thought processes? 

Dan: I really like that exercise’I got it in an improv class. I think it’s great for a creativity class. The idea, to explain it briefly, is to come up with a list of things that didn’t exist 300 years ago. You pick a toaster oven, an iPad, pizza delivery, whatever. You then try to explain it to someone from 300 years ago. It ends up being very, very difficult.

For instance, I recently did this exercise with a company where they ended up picking an iPad. This one very bright woman in their operations department was trying to explain an iPad to me from her perspective’and I took the position of someone from 1713. And she basically just threw up her hands in exasperation, because it takes so much explanation’you have to understand electricity, which didn’t exist then. That alone is hard to fathom.

So, trying to explain an iPad from 300 years ago turned out to be really hard because we have certain kinds of shared functions that allow us to understand things.

The big take-away for selling’and the way you can influence’is that a lot of times, when we explain/sell/pitch things to other people, the folks on the other side of the table are kind of like those folks from 1713. They don’t have the same shared assumptions you have. And so, if you operate under assumptions they don’t have, you’re never going to persuade anybody.

Katie: Especially in product development or design’what are these factors at the back of our minds? 

Dan: Exactly’it shines a light on them, or excavates them a bit’and there are a lot more of them than we think. What you would think to be the simplest product you could imagine, may end up being outrageously difficult to explain because there are so many shared assumptions that you lack.

About the Interviewer: 

Katie Konrath is an Innovation Process Consultant at Ideas To Go, an innovation agency that works with Fortune 500 companies in ideation and concept development to incorporate the voice of the consumer.

You can catch Ideas To Go with Mead Johnson as they co-present ‘Research for Innovation’How to Turn Facts Into Ideas’ at TMRE on Tuesday, October 22nd at 3:15pm.

5 Crucial Steps in Reaching the Teen Customer

I came across an interesting post on Ypulse that highlights Gary Rudman’s 5 tips on what marketers should consider when they are trying to reach teens. Here they are:

  1. Teens are so used to getting everything with a touch of a button, so the message must also be clear and simple. If the message is too hard to understand, then teens will not be able to digest the information and you might lose them altogether.
  2. We live in a technology based world, and so new products must excite and dazzle the youth. You can count the number of teens who do not own an iPod on one hand. Items like jeans, skateboards, and other non-technology based items do not excite teens anymore.
  3. Not only is technology important, but the appearance of the item is important as well. Gary mentions that a sixteen year old boy in a focus group once said, ‘You don’t want a girl to see you using a lame, old, ugly-ass cell phone.”
  4. Customization is a must-have in reaching teens. MySpace, Facebook, Xbox360 all provide a platform for teens to customize features and skins personally tailored to their individual style.
  5. Portability is king for these tech-crazy teens. Teens want to be able to call, text, listen to music, watch videos, take pictures, and surf the web in all in product. This is the exact reason why the iPhone is a hit amongst teens, not to mention it also is extremely fashionable and appealing.

Hope you enjoy this info!