4 Things to Consider in Selecting the Appropriate Product Test Design
Your company has developed a new formulation for an existing product and market research has been requested. How do you decide which is the appropriate test and the correct sample composition to evaluate the reformulation? In order to design the appropriate test, there are a series of questions that need to be answered:
- Why was the new formulation developed?
- Is it a product improvement?
- Is it a cost reduction/margin improvement?
- Is the change being made to attract non-users/less frequent users of the brand?
- Is an ingredient being changed because of lack of availability, or to comply with governmental regulations (FDA, etc.)
- Is there a desire to be at parity to, or better than a competitive product?
- What is the importance of the brand being changed to the revenue of the company?
- Will the formulation change be communicated to consumers, either in advertising or on the package?
- This will play a role in determining whether the test should be conducted on a blind or identified basis, and what other stimuli might be needed.
- Can the study be conducted using a CLT (sniff, taste, feel) or is a home use test needed (either to obtain in-home usage, multiple usage occasions, and/or because of preparation)?
- Is there some aspect of the product that makes paired testing invalid?
- For example, is there a residual effect that would make it impossible for a respondent to accurately evaluate a second product? (dandruff shampoo, facial moisturizer, acne treatment, very spicy product in a taste test, etc.)
When the answers to these questions are known, the study can be designed selecting from the following options:
- Blind vs. brand identified or both
- Monadic, protomonadic, sequential monadic or paired
- CLT vs. Home Use Test (length of usage period)
- Concept/Product or Product only
- Brand users, loyal brand users, infrequent users and or non-users of the brand
When the correct study design is conducted, the information needed to make the decision will be provided.
If you would like assistance is designing and executing the correct test, contact David Buchler at Target Research Group, Inc. firstname.lastname@example.org