Concept Testing Example: Key Approaches and Testing Procedures

Why should businesses bother with concept testing? Concept testing can help businesses reduce waste and give customers what they want at the best price.

Also, companies take concept testing because it can provide empirical support for marketing and advertising campaigns, while also supporting product development and content marketing.

Communicating ideas to your target audience before implementation helps you avoid errors and save money. You’d know if they’re sold on a fresh idea and when there’s no cause to replace what’s already in place.

This essay discusses fundamental methodologies and strategies for idea testing and finishes with real-world examples of how concept testing helped organizations launch their products.

person holding pink sticky note
person holding pink sticky note

What Exactly is Concept Testing?

Concept testing is an idea evaluation technique typically to determine whether a product, advertisement, logo, or campaign will attract users in a particular market.

It is a more scientific means of idea generation, in which individuals give feedback on a new concept and help make the decision.

Concept tests involve surveys, focus groups, or user interviews that inquire about the product, service, or brand. Data collection and analysis give brand concept insights.

Concept Testing Example: Key Approaches and Testing Procedures

Concept testing is a testing process that involves the gathering of test stimuli and analyzing how they are evaluated in comparison to expectations.

The stimuli may be items, activities, and/or events, which are the basis of the test. Here are some key approaches and testing procedures to employ.

1. Conduct an online survey

Product developers understand that using good survey questions is a tried and true method of producing meaningful data to make future decisions. Questionnaires are commonly used to collect useful information such as:

  • The quantity of potential customers
  • whether they’d find a product or service beneficial
  • How much they’d be willing to pay.

When sending out surveys, keep in mind that you must approach a significant sample of people who match the profile of your target audience.

The key is to ask the correct questions to the right people and to ask enough people to receive significant answers. A Likert scale is frequently employed, a form of scale used to rate various characteristics or attributes from an end-user viewpoint.

Effective concept testing can also indicate which demographic groups, locations, or market segments will like your idea.

2. Conjoint analysis to determine essential aspects

This is a strategy in which participants are presented with a series of traits and asked to rank them in order of attraction. Conjoint analysis is thought to be a helpful method for generating deep insights.

It is essentially a method of determining the value buyers place on specific product qualities. Conjoint analysis is often implemented through a survey in which participants are provided a set of traits and asked to compare or rate them. It can help assess and understand user preferences for certain features, generating actionable data to guide product development.

3. Use qualitative approaches to fine-tune ideas

Group talks are a tried-and-true method for gathering rich qualitative input. Face-to-face in a focus group or online, we may lead a carefully led discussion using prototypes or other stimuli.

This enables the company to zero in on the product features that customers genuinely want or require. Qualitative research can also discover unmet demands, encouraging future development and giving your product or service a competitive advantage.

In some circumstances, conducting one-on-one in-depth interviews might provide qualitative feedback. This is especially handy if you have a deep or complicated concept aimed at a specific B2B audience.

It is critical to utilize open-ended inquiries to elicit information. Allow respondents to express their preferences and dislikes by asking them what they like and dislike. This allows you to acquire objective feedback from your target audience without constraints or bias.

4. Adopt an agile and iterative testing strategy

Develop an agile and iterative testing technique as another method for testing product concepts. Online approaches like online communities make it easier to test ideas, gather feedback, modify concepts based on audience response, and retest them with customers.

An online community is a research platform that brings consumers together to complete a series of tasks. A research team moderates the debate to obtain detailed feedback that will allow for effective concept iteration.

5. Use new technology to bring customer ideas to reality

Using technology brings thoughts to life by creating stimuli that help the target market imagine your proposed products or services.

Concepts can be converted into attractive mock-ups that guarantee the fundamental idea is apparent.

In this way, you may get under the skin of your potential customers and let their emotions and wants direct you to answers. The end outcome will speak for itself.

Concept Testing Example of Real Life Brands

A concept test is a survey of the characteristics of a concept such as how well a company sells products to millennials. Fun fact: a robot–an artificially intelligent machine–can do concept tests. Here are some good instances of concept testing:

Tesla

Tesla’s Model 3 debuted in 2017 and made headlines throughout the world. Tesla used a novel launch approach, concept testing, to secure customer approval and raise funding.

The Model 3 concept was presented to the participants. They might put down a deposit once they are familiar with the car’s various features and perks. Tesla was able to raise $400 million thanks to this method.

Thus, by conducting concept testing, Tesla could obtain valuable feedback from customers and the financial means to proceed with their launch.

Lego

Lego has always had difficulty selling its items to females. Despite their best efforts, young girls only purchased 9% of their toys. Lego chose to change this by investing extensively in concept testing and market research over a long period. This study’s primary goal was to better understand young females’ play behaviors.

This research revealed that girls tended to construct full settings rather than single structures. Girls were also more concerned with interior layouts and structural elements.

Using these observations, Lego decided to create a new range of items aimed just at females – Lego Friends. This series debuted in 2012 and increased the value of building toys for girls from $300 million in 2012 to $900 million in 2014.

Yamaha

Yamaha is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of musical instruments. When constructing its Yamaha Montage keyboard, the business struggled with whether to utilize knobs or sliding faders.

As a result, they decided to conduct a concept testing poll with their clients to determine their preferences. They were ready to make their pick after receiving over 400 submissions from musicians worldwide. What may have taken weeks of the internal debate was decided in a single day.

NASCAR

In 2017, NASCAR decided to alter the structure of its most important event. They wanted to hear from viewers about their reactions to the adjustment. This effort was critical since the cash generated by NASCAR through advertising was directly influenced by viewership.

NASCAR conducted concept testing and research with over 200 super fans to assess their experience, opinions, and reactions to the events and advertising. This research assisted NASCAR in validating its new format. They also gathered critical information to implement the new race format properly.

Concept testing can help you improve your product development and marketing strategies. It can also shorten the time it takes to market and launch your product and keep your consumers satisfied.

To Wrap Up

Concept testing takes place throughout the early stages of product development. It combines quantitative and qualitative research approaches to evaluate new product concepts before they are introduced to the market.

Concept testing is a research approach that entails asking clients questions about your product or service thoughts and ideas before launching it. As a result, you may assess your clients’ acceptability and willingness to buy and make key decisions before the launch.

Research determines the frequency and quality of purchase, what products are bought and why, and makes various recommendations to the company.

Concept Testing Example: Key Approaches and Testing Procedures

Abir is a data analyst and researcher. Among her interests are artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing. As a humanitarian and educator, she actively supports women in tech and promotes diversity.

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