Product and brand managers have to make a range of decisions to ensure that they have a mix of products that are both profitable and at the same time meet consumer and competitive demands. Decisions such as whether to introduce a new item to the product line, delete an exiting item, the features to include in a product and how to advertise it, can benefit immensely from research especially for FMCGs (Fast Moving Consumer Products) where margins are slim and high turnover is crucial.
The rate of product failure is very high in some areas and while there are different levels of product failure, the existence of the museum of failed products is testimony to the challenges inherent in product innovation and managing existing products.
Recently the CCME completed a project for a local manufacturer who wanted to determine whether to introduce a product variation which would extend the company’s product line. The company was mindful of issues of consumer acceptance, potential uses of the product, perceptions of VFM (Value for Money) of existing solutions, possible cannibalization of items in the company’s existing line-up and also wanted an answer to the hard question of whether consumers would buy the product if it were available. To gain some insight into these matters the company commissioned CCME to facilitate a focus group. Some of the results were counter-intuitive but at least the company now has some insight into how some consumers are likely to respond to the new product if introduced.
The CCME can help design and execute studies to address any of the following:
1. Market acceptance of new product concepts (both goods and services)
2. Consumer perceptions of own and competing brands
3. Positioning of the brand
4. Assessment of brand image and appearance
5. New packaging decisions etc