New Product Development



All marketers know that consumers struggle to imagine the benefit of a new product if the concept is unfamiliar and communicated in isolation: out of usage context, or the context of the choice from which it is selected for purchased.  Behavioral Scientist, Dan Ariely famously wrote:  “Most people don’t know what they want unless they see it in context.”

Folklore around the development of truly breakthrough products suggests that consumers never would have recognized the need for the mobile phone, or the bag-less vacuum cleaner. Too foreign. Too hard to imagine a purchase choice.  Even more general consumer products that are new to a category or category disruptors suffer from this phenomena.

We believe that the best way to screen and validate concepts for new products is to present them to consumers in the context of how they would experience them in a shopping environment.  In context, on a shelf, even presented with an early rendering of a pack.

It is purest system 1 thinking.  Marketers in the rational process of inventing new products tend to over emphasize the novelty of the concept. They forget that consumers dismiss that which is too far from their shopper mindset.  The concept needs to be anchored in familiarity and then expressed with its competitive benefits in order to produce reliable insights that can drive NPD strategies.

We utilize a proven behavioral framework in New Product Development (NPD) research, which allows brands to test new product concepts in the competitive context of the pack, the shelf and the shopping experience, as well as the usage context in the home, earlier in the NPD process, to produce research results that drive higher success rates and greater brand growth.