Mistakes To Avoid When Product Concept Testing | WSS
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Product concept testing is pivotal in brand development, offering invaluable insights into potential product viability and consumer preferences.

However, while the process can be a game-changer for many brands, it’s not without its challenges. All too often, brands stumble into pitfalls that can skew results and lead to misguided decisions.

With that in mind, let’s delve into some of the most common mistakes brands make during product concept testing and offer guidance on how to sidestep them.

Mistake #1: Putting Too Many Ideas into A Single Product Concept Test

It’s natural to want to maximise your product concept test. After all, gathering feedback is crucial, and it might seem efficient to throw in as many ideas as possible.

However, cramming multiple ideas into one survey can backfire.

When you present your target audience with a lengthy list of questions for each idea, the testing experience can become overwhelming. Participants might rush through the survey, skim over questions, or even drop out before completing it. This not only affects the quality of feedback but also reduces its accuracy.

While it might seem like a cost-saving measure initially, in the long run, it can lead to misguided decisions based on poor-quality data. Remember, quality always trumps quantity. It’s better to have precise insights from a few well-thought-out ideas than vague feedback from a multitude.

Mistake #2: Cancelling Idea(s) After a Single Concept Test

It’s easy to feel disheartened when a product concept doesn’t perform well in its initial test. But remember, a single test isn’t the be-all and end-all. Numerous factors could have influenced the outcome, such as testing the wrong demographic or geographic region.

If your product concept doesn’t initially resonate with your target audience, it doesn’t necessarily mean you should abandon ship. Instead, consider it an opportunity to pivot and refine your idea. Take the feedback on board, tweak your concept, and test again. It’s all part of the iterative process that’s crucial to successful product development.

So, don’t be too quick to discard an idea. Be prepared to make adjustments and give it another shot. After all, the most successful products are often the result of trial and error, learning, and adaptation.

Mistake #3: Guiding Consumers Down a Specific Path with Closed Questions

When it comes to product concept testing, the way you frame your questions matters. Closed questions, while straightforward, can inadvertently guide consumers down a specific path, limiting the depth and breadth of their feedback.

Open-ended questions, on the other hand, allow consumers to share their spontaneous thoughts and feelings about a product concept. This unaided feedback can reveal concerns, opportunities, or insights you might not have anticipated.

For instance, instead of just asking consumers to rate a product concept, why not let them describe their initial reactions or what stood out to them?

While there’s a place for yes/no questions, follow up those answers with questions that delve deeper into why consumers feel a certain way. That way, you not only gauge interest and purchase intent but also understand the emotional resonance and differentiated benefits of your product concept.

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Mistake #4: Testing Single Product Concepts in Isolation

Testing a single product concept in isolation can provide valuable insights, but it often lacks the context needed to make informed decisions. It’s essential to test multiple concept variants to optimise different elements like messaging, visuals, and pricing.

When you test only one iteration, you might miss out on understanding how small changes can significantly impact consumer perception and preference.

Additionally, testing concepts both standalone and side-by-side can provide a clearer picture of absolute reactions and relative preferences. This approach helps you understand how your concept stacks up against alternatives or competitors.

So, incorporate these practices into your testing strategy to be better equipped to make decisions that resonate with your target audience and ultimately drive product success.

Mistake #5: Over-Reliance on Surveys

Surveys are a popular tool for gathering feedback, but relying solely on them can lead to missed opportunities in product concept testing. While they’re great for collecting quantitative data, they might not capture the nuances of consumer motivations and reactions.

It’s worth considering more qualitative methods, such as in-depth interviews or focus groups. These approaches allow for a deeper dive into consumer thoughts, feelings, and behaviours, offering insights that a simple survey might overlook.

Remember, a holistic approach to product concept testing often yields higher-quality insights. By combining both quantitative and qualitative methods, you’ll be better equipped to understand your target audience and refine your product concepts effectively.

Perfect Your Product Concept Testing Approach with Wirral Sensory Services

Avoiding these common mistakes in product concept testing is crucial for any brand aiming to develop successful products. A comprehensive and open-minded approach to testing, which includes a mix of both qualitative and quantitative methods, is crucial in gaining valuable insights that can inform product development.

At Wirral Sensory Services (WSS), we pride ourselves on our extensive experience and expertise in product concept testing. Our team utilises a wide range of methodologies, going beyond just surveys, to provide you with the most accurate and actionable insights.

Get in touch with us today to discuss how we can support your brand in developing products that meet the needs and preferences of your target audience. You can reach us by phone on +44 (0)151 346 2999 or via email at info@wssintl.com.