Early consumer input helps new product ideas grow faster

Early consumer input helps new product ideas grow faster

In the world of new product innovation, speed to market is key. Companies pour resources into developing new product ideas that meet their consumers’ ever-changing needs, but this effort (and all if its enormous costs) can fall short of forecasted volumes if a competitor launches its innovation first and grabs valuable first-to-market spoils.

One way companies can improve speed to market is by involving consumers early in new product innovation so that their input guides the entire process, especially concept writing. Starting at square one with fresh consumer feedback helps companies develop compelling new product concepts from the get-go, enabling them to unlock launch gates faster.

Turning concept testing inside out to speed up innovation

Companies typically develop new product concepts based on market research or a technological innovation and then test them with consumers for feedback. This feedback helps companies determine whether ideas can be advanced or need to be taken back to the drawing board—a costly cycle that can repeat itself until concepts achieve adequate purchase interest scores.

What if we flipped this process on its head so that the voice of the consumer became the inspiration for new concepts? In a strategic partner blog post, researcher and facilitator Laurie Tema-Lyn discusses the power of co-creation, where consumer involvement helps start innovation off in the right direction. Infusing consumer opinions into the process while developing concepts helps companies work on concept development and qualitative research concurrently, and spend less time and money on reworking new product ideas that won’t hold up in future consumer testing. Instead, the different players in the innovation process can focus their energies on moving the right ideas through the launch pipeline as efficiently as possible.

Connecting co-creation to well-written concepts

So just how can co-creation provide a starting point for new product concepts? During a co-creation session, researchers prompt consumers to share their thoughts about products in a range of ways, from having them handle prototypes to conducting creative activities such as doodling (it really does boost creativity!) or storytelling. The consumer feedback and opinions captured during co-creation then act as the seeds of new product ideas, with an expert concept writer using benefit language to grow them into full-fledged concepts.

While a researcher can always share the results of a co-creation exercise with a concept writer after the fact, having an experienced concept writer on site for the session can save an extra step as well as help catalyze the brainstorming process. By bringing to the table a familiarity with what works and what doesn’t work in concept testing, an on-site concept writer can help researchers curate the consumer insights, features and benefits that will work together best to form successful new product concepts.

Harvesting fresh consumer input during co-creation for Sabra Foods

Combining concept writing with co-creation can have delicious results, as was the case when Writing by Design worked alongside New Leafe Research and Practical Imagination Enterprises to help Sabra Foods develop a variety of new product concepts. Read more about this multi-day innovation summit here.

No matter what stage of innovation your company is in, Writing by Design’s Crystal ClearSM concept writing services can help you grow new product ideas faster and unlock launch gates more easily. Want us to pair your upcoming research with concept writing for faster results? Tell us about your project.

Headshot of Peter Tolly

With an education in creative writing and linguistics and professional experience as a copywriter and communications manager, Peter Tolly uses his writing to help others connect with and inspire their audiences.