Attract Customers More Effectively Than Your Competition
How does your packaging compare with your competition? What are the current packaging trends in your industry? If you can't answer either of these questions it's time for some market research. It's a simple concept, but one we often see neglected. Below are 4 straightforward market research methods. Find those that work best for you and give your new or redesigned labels the best chance to make a sale.
When designing a new label, whether it is a new product launch or an existing redesign, market research is an important step to creating the most appealing and effective label. On the retail shelf, your label is a crucial tool for selling your product. Consumers will scan the shelf and pick up the products that are the most eye catching and contain a clear description of the contents and their use. To find out what the consumer wants in a label, you should talk to the customer and analyze the competition.
Use Market Research When Developing Your Labels
The goal of market research is to collect information about your target market and customer base; it should be a part of your business strategy if you want to be competitive. While there are many companies-for-hire that specialize in market research, it does not have to be an expensive process. You can easily plan and conduct your own research to help determine the best label for your product. There are many research options to choose from and you should ask yourself what you hope to learn from your research to help decide which method is best for you.
Focus Groups: A focus group is when people are asked for their opinions about a product or packaging. Questions are asked in a group environment where participants can interact with other group members. This is a good setting to showcase packaging and design mockups. Bring a few label designs to show your focus group and try to gauge their initial reaction to things like shape, color, and graphics. Let them sample your product and explore which benefit claims on the label would most influence purchase. Coworkers, friends, and even family can make a productive focus group.
Surveys: Surveys are undertaken with the goal of making inferences about the topic being researched. Questions are asked to many people to gather information about their thoughts on a topic. Using an online survey software is a quick and free way to conduct a survey. Online surveys can elicit more honest responses than in person research because of their anonymity. Surveys are a good opportunity to use tools such as rating scales. Be direct and don’t ask leading questions to collect usable responses.
Interviews: An interview is typically a conversation between two people where questions are asked by the interviewer to elicit information. Who you interview and where you interview them are things to consider. You might conduct point of purchase interviews with consumers in the store as they browse and select products. This can give insight into their motivation. What is appealing about the packaging in their cart? You might also interview your own employees about your product, after all they know the product best.
Direct Observation: Direct observation involves a first hand visual assessment of the topic being researched. For our purposes this means going to the store and observing the products on the shelf. Taking a look at the competition can be one of the most valuable research exercises you can perform. What colors, themes, and materials are most prevalent? Would a deviation from the norm cause your product to stand out as a unique offering or would it look jarring and unfamiliar against the competition? Frequently visiting the retail locations where your products are sold can be a poweful research tool.
More Than Marketing Research and Data
When analyzing your data, you don’t always need to interpret it literally. Consumers often have trouble articulating their meaning, so use the surrounding evidence and your instincts to determine the value of their response. Know that whichever method you choose, it will require time to plan, conduct, and analyze your results. In the end, most of the data you gather will be subjective. Use it to guide your label project and provide insights but don’t let it completely dictate the trajectory of your brand.
So take a look around, talk with people, and consider what you can learn ahead of your next product launch. With a little deliberate planning, asking the right questions, and observing the retail shelf your products will live in, you can greatly help your labels succeed in selling your products.