Use Cases

Surveying Concepts in 4 Steps

September 21, 2021

Surveying Concepts in 4 Steps

How to create a concept test and what you need to keep in mind.

Introduction

There is no guarantee that your product or service will succeed even if you have an incredible idea. Many ideas fail due to a lack of a market for products. To prevent this, concepts are tested pre-deployment with the specific audience.

Concept testing aims to determine whether an innovative idea is accepted by a potential target audience and the likelihood that the idea will go to the market during the first stage of development. Before launching a product, the insights generated by a concept test can be utilized to optimize the product. Additionally, it helps with target group segmentation and positioning. Testing a concept does not require the completion of a completed product. The idea of the product or service is sufficient.

Tests of concepts are conducted at the beginning of a product development cycle. Identifying the product's strengths and weaknesses is the main objective. Using market research, you can answer questions such as, "Is the general product concept attractive?", "Is the core benefit of the product concept legitimate?" and "What new features should be added?".

Who exactly do you ask these questions? Tests are conducted within relevant target audiences to identify concepts. However, in terms of the future customer, this does not have to be described in great detail. When developing new or innovative ideas, the potential customer can be defined more broadly. Concept testing is essential because it provides the first insight into the target audience.

Concept testing should be carried out before the launch of products, not just before. Continual testing is necessary in all critical phases of the development process to improve and further develop a product or service.

In this article, we describe how a concept test survey is structured.

1. Describe the Product Idea in the Concept Testing Survey

A concept testing survey begins with a verbal presentation of the project idea, i.e., a description in written form, to the survey participants. Mockups or sketches can be added to the narrative.

Classically, a verbal concept is composed of insight, benefit, and reason to believe:

Insight

Using insights, we can identify why the consumer might want the product. Often, the situation referred to is just a situation from the consumers' point of view. Insights should always be provided from the potential customer's perspective and should be relevant to the topic or environment of the product but not necessarily related to the product itself. Initially, the statement was associated with the world of consumers before the product idea came into existence.

Benefit

The customer promise is the benefit. How does the product benefit the consumer? Using insights you can better determine how the product best benefits the customer.

Reason to believe

Once you can prove to your consumers that they will get the promised benefit, they will start to believe. Whether it is functional or emotional, it supports the benefit. The features of the product and its technology, ingredients, and expert advice are included in this.

Survey results may be influenced by how the concept is described, so companies should pay attention to the following:

  • The information should be neutral and based strictly on facts.
  • Technical vocabulary should be avoided if the respondents do not come from the respective industry.
  • Avoid advertising jargon.
  • To make the content easy to comprehend, it must be explained in as few words as possible (this also applies to the individual sentences!) and structured clearly.

Consider the monadic approach when more than one idea requires testing in a concept test. This method requires respondents to evaluate only one concept. This approach prevents the survey participants' opinions from being influenced.

When there are few survey questions and concise concepts, a seminomadic approach is advantageous. A survey should test a certain number of concepts based on the number of product ideas and survey questions. No more than six concepts should be included in a survey.

2. A Concept Testing Survey to Find Out What People Like and Dislike about Products

After explaining a product idea in sufficient detail, the question becomes one of general liking. Work with a Likert scale of four or six steps to assess whether or not you like something.

A subsequent open question asks why the product idea is liked or disliked. A potential customer's feedback, both negative and positive, is crucial to the development of the product. As a consequence, product defects or inconveniences can be identified early from the perspective of the customer. Alternatively, certain product features can be determined that are particularly stimulating to use.

Each question focuses on understanding the product and assessing its credibility and uniqueness. In terms of positioning on the market and USPs, consumer feedback assists the company with product optimization.

3. Survey of Conceptual Testing: Purchase Potential

Having an attractive offer doesn't necessarily mean that there will be a demand for it. A concept test questionnaire should also include questions on product interest and purchase probability. Both of these aspects can be measured using Likert scales. By narrowing down the target audience, the message can be more focused.

Following the initial tests, only those segments of the target market that like the concept and are willing to pay for it or purchase it are surveyed. You may also inquire about the explicit purpose of purchase or use to generate comprehensive insights.

Depending on the product idea or service concept, the concept test questionnaire will naturally take a different look. When it comes to a physical product, the place where consumers would like to buy it most determines its likelihood of purchase. In addition, flavor preferences, ingredients, packaging, and design preferences are also relevant. Questioning about how potential customers wish to be contacted or under what conditions they would use a service can be informative for services.

4. The Pricing Analysis: Concept Testing

An analysis of price can be included in a concept test if plenty of participants were excited about the idea and theoretically interested in purchasing the product. You can determine whether a new product would be marketable at a given price by conducting a first price inquiry.

Review

Throughout the product development process, iterative concept testing is essential. A detailed product test can be conducted with different foci, depending on the level of product development. A product test can, for example, focus on specific product characteristics or perhaps a name-testing survey.

Conclusion:

These steps help you structure your concept test survey. The key is to determine whether the idea is innovative, accepted by a potential target audience, and if that the idea will go to the market during the first stage of development. Finally, do not overlook the importance of continual testing, as continuous improvement and further development of a product or service is vital to the success of your company. 


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