Understanding and caring for the needs of customers is key to building loyalty and sales growth. Excellent service differentiates otherwise similar competitors in a way that is important to customers. But services are intangible; they cannot be measured, tested and verified in advance of consumption.
Usage & Attitudes
- Have you ever wondered what customers think about your product or services?
- Do you sometimes ponder how customers use them?
- Have you ever asked why they use competitor products instead of yours?
- Would you like to understand purchasing habits and usage patterns?
- Do you want to know when and where customers buy your products?
A Usage and Attitude (U&A) survey, also known as Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices (KAP) or Habits and Attitudes (H&A), will answer most of these questions and will enable you better understand your customers and those of your competitors.
Product Tests: Product research includes simple, in-person research such as taste tests conducted in halls and malls, as well as elaborate, long-term "beta testing" of high-tech products by selected, experienced users. The objective of product research can be simple; for example, a company may tweak the taste of an existing product, then measure consumers' reactions to see if there is room in the market for a variation. It can also be more extensive, as when a company develops prototypes of proposed new products that may be intended for market introduction months down the road.
In product research, as in all market research, there is a danger to paying too much attention to the wrong things. For instance, the introduction of New Coke was based on the outcome of taste tests that showed the public wanted a sweeter product. But later an angry public, outraged that Coca-Cola was planning to change the familiar formula, forced the company to ignore its taste tests and leave the original Coke on the market. The company had put too much stock in the results of the taste test studies, and had failed to factor in research that showed consumers were happy with the product as it was.