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Revolutionizing Design: Triumph with Client Concept Testing


MarketResponse International recently took on the challenge presented by a client, a leading brand of accessories for mobile technology devices, seeking feedback updating their flagship product design.

Meet the MarketResponse International research team

The Managing Director and company founder, Tom Pearson, led the research design and client interactions. At the same time, Lynn Schreifels, the Research Manager, played a crucial role in programming activities, moderating participants, managing client interactions, and analysis and reporting.

The Client’s challenge

The client sought to refresh its flagship product, presenting the research team with over 30 design concepts, including several structural ideas related to its assembly and functionality.

The client’s challenge was to narrow down the numerous design concepts to a manageable few that showed the most promise for appealing to their current loyal base, while attracting new customers to the brand.

The client needed a multi-faceted research approach, combining qualitative and quantitative insights from both current and potential users, including personal stories about positive and negative product use experiences, as well as, thorough evaluations of numerous product design concepts.

The MarketResponse International solution

MarketResponse International, in collaboration with CMNTY and Dynata, executed a week-long concept test project. The participants, carefully selected based on specific experience with the product category and brands, engaged in a 7-day study using the CMNTY online platform.

The team recruited 40 participants, with 30 completing the entire study. The team overcame challenges with low incidence rates and the need for specific segments, thanks to a well-crafted screener designed and programmed by MarketResponse, using Dynata’s C-Mix quantitative survey platform.

The respondents shared opinions through structured survey questions, forums, and heatmaps to rate and review the concepts.

The process

The respondents were engaged daily with different tasks throughout the weeklong study. Research tasks included:

  1. Aesthetic Design Exploration — Participants reviewed dozens of design concepts, using rating scales and CMNTY’s heatmap feature, which enabled respondents to point out specific aspects that they liked and disliked. The aim:
    • Rank order the aesthetic design concepts from most to least preferred,
    • Capture nuanced insights into preferred aesthetic design features.
  2. Structural Alternatives Assessment
    • Focus on alternative structural designs for product assembly, with questions on DIY aspects and customization.
    • Deep insights affirmed the need for changes to align with the brand’s promise and identity.
  3. Importance and attractiveness ratings and rankings of product features and benefits:
    • Quantitative exercise revealed the product’s primary requirements (table stakes) that should never be compromised; as well as,
    • Features/benefits that could be potential delighters to current loyalists, as well as new buyers to the brand.
  4. Free-flowing forum discussion, allowing and encouraging respondents to share ideas and advise the client company on what they believe would be the attributes of the ideal next generation product.
    • Qualitative insights provided support for research findings gained from the previous research exercises, as well as some new insights to consider for the next generation product.

Participant experience

The clients’ involvement throughout the process enabled the research team to revise and fine-tune exercises on the fly, as needed to uncover critical insights. And Lynn Schreifels, the MarketResponse Project Leader, expressed satisfaction with the CMNTY Platform’s communication capabilities, facilitating probes and follow-up questions. The respondents also reported enjoying the interactive research process.

The CMNTY Platform performed well as a solution, with the support team responsive to questions from the research team and aiding with quick changes and adjustments as needed.

Results and impact

MarketResponse International successfully addressed their client’s challenge by leveraging the CMNTY Platform, delivering valuable insights that guided the client toward confident decision-making in their product development process.

Tom: “The client is very happy because we gave them all the insights they needed to confidently move forward. Combining quantitative measures with qualitative insights enabled us to recommend which design elements and concepts showed the best potential for further research and development.”

The collaborative effort between the client and MarketResponse research team, Dynata, and the CMNTY Platform showcased the effectiveness of a well-executed concept test in a dynamic and evolving market.

The CMNTY Platform is an invaluable tool for any market research agency as well as for building and managing your Internal and Brand community.

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