Research 101: When it comes to brand building and product growth, listen to the voice of the many, not just the few
Over the many years of experience we’ve had in the industry, we know that the only way to capture valid data about a product or brand is by listening to the voice of the many, not just the few.
At Catalyx, we stand by the power of crowdsourcing, drawing from a huge richness of consumer response at scale, understanding patterns from qual and quant, and putting the consumer voice at the heart of a brand.
To achieve this type of validity for our clients, we’ve designed a robust mixed method systemised growth model – 1000s of data points (including images, videos, verbatims) gathered from a crowd – capturing consumer human reality through a combined behavioural, emotional, critical opinion, and projective desire methodological approach.
By amassing true consumer insight – and bringing your crowd into your innovation and communication development, and maximising your in-market product success – we’re able to generate actionable recommendations that inform critical decisions for consumers.
Want to know what this looks like in practise? Here’s a deep dive into some of our crowdsourcing approaches that will make your recommendations for growth credible:
In-market scorecard for optimisation identification
5P recommendation framework for the short and long term
Behavioural imagery that WOWs – watching behaviour as it actually happens – getting people to capture what they do in the moment.
Consumer testing videos – showing reactions before and after product usage (click on the image below to view an example)
Transforming your consumer verbatims into meaningful insights. Bringing the consumer to the heart of your business in powerful ways.
For consumer insight exactly how you want it and demonstrations of our laser-focused reporting and award-winning Consumer Activation System, contact our team today.
Bitesize Bulletin – Building confidence in the best decisions for growth
At Catalyx, our multi-method crowdsourced approach provides laser targeted recommendations to unlock growth for products and brands.
With our use of meticulous quantitative and behaviourally qualitative market auditing, our reports can reinforce a brand’s product confidence while highlighting the areas that might need a little more thought and attention for growth.
It’s a tried and tested approach that helps our clients take a rounded look at new or low growth products with fresh eyes and provides the evidence they need when it comes to budget and promotion decisions.
But don’t just take our word for it…
To help show you what we mean, we’ve conducted our own research to identify the issues and assumptions that well-known brands commonly come up against on their product innovation journey.
Read on for our bitesize insights and illustrative reports.
LAUNCHING A NEW PRODUCT UNDER YOUR BRAND NEEDS TO BE DIFFERENTIATED ENOUGH FROM YOUR EXISTING PRODUCT COMMUNICATIONS*
*Catalyx’s own product launch audit found the UK’s new Corona Cero and the US version Corona Sunbrew, shows ‘loved’ product promises and taste, but the communication execution in advertising felt to consumers like another ‘fun in the sun’ Corona ad without clear differentiating reasons to tap into purchase drivers for the non-alcoholic beer.
DON’T LET YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE MAKE ASSUMPTIONS. CLEARLY COMMUNICATE THE WHY AND HOW OF A PRODUCT! A BRILLIANT INNOVATION WON’T WIN IN MARKET IF YOUR PRODUCT USAGE BENEFITS AREN’T STANDING OUT*
*Catalyx’s recent product growth audit of San Pellegrino Essenza drink found that while consumers liked the product, they weren’t clear about how and when the drink should be consumed, impacting understanding of the product’s positioning and potential for purchase intent.
WHEN BUDGET FOR PRODUCT PLACEMENT ONLINE ISN’T AVAILABLE, THE PRODUCT IMAGE NEEDS TO STAND OUT AT A QUICK SCROLLING GLANCE. CONDUCT ONLINE BEHAVIORAL A/B TESTING FOR FINDABILITY TO BOOST DIFFERENTIATION AND STRENGTHEN PERFORMANCE.*
*Catalyx’s own research found the UK’s new launch Corona Cero found packaging grabbed the attention of consumers on-shelf, but the white background of its packaging made it blend into the white background of the web page, and got lost amongst other brands online. Your product picture is crucial for standout so needs to be behaviorally tested amongst the competition.
AUDIT TO IMPROVE PURCHASE IN-STORE AND ONLINE. KNOW WHAT LEVERS TO PULL AND BARRIERS TO OVERCOME FOR FINDABILITY AND COMMUNICATION TO DRIVE ATTENTION TO YOUR PRODUCT OVER THE COMPETITION*
*Research Catalyx conducted on San Pellegrino’s new Essenza product found that it suffers from a critical lack of shelf presence, low stock and shelf positioning in store, poor categorisation online, and low presence across online stores, leaving consumers opting for more easily accessible brands and products offline and online.
YOUR PRODUCT MIGHT BE LOVED BUT IF NOT AVAILABLE, CONSUMERS WILL CHOOSE THE CONVENIENCE OF THE COMPETITION EVERY TIME. WORK WITH RETAILERS TO BOOST AVAILABILITY OF YOUR NEW PRODUCT IN STORE*
*Research Catalyx conducted on new Corona Cero’s show that while the brand creates a strong impression in-store when found, it suffers from availability issues and is a clear barrier to driving up sales.
AUDIT YOUR COMMUNICATION MATERIALS AND DEMONSTRATE EXPLICITLY HOW THEY DIFFERENTIATE FROM COMPETITOR PRODUCTS.*
*In a product growth audit of San Pelligrino’s new Essenza, Catalyx found their advert to be unmemorable with only 1 in 10 consumers able to remember seeing it. Once they were shown, consumers were looking for a clearer product positioning, explicit USPs and usage.
Are we focused on the wrong things and asking the wrong questions? Andrew Reed at MRMW
Listen to Andrew Reed, Catalyx’s chief commercial officer, speak at MRMW about why a focus on outcomes through a systemised approach will unlock growth for your brand:
Even the biggest brands need to live the lifestyle to grow within category
The health drinks market is one of the fastest growing in the world, with consumers increasingly making the move towards healthier options as a lifestyle choice.
Major international brands are releasing new zero alcohol and low sugar products into an already crowded drinks market at such a rate that they can easily get lost on shelf or screen – and this can cause problems for even top-quality products.
At Catalyx, our mixed methodology research shows that companies are often relying too much on the “tried and tested” promotion of their most famous branding, even holding back on really championing the benefits of their new launch.
“They already love what we do, surely they will love this too?” seems to be a theme, but the good news is that we are perfectly positioned to help give brands the confidence they need for growth by providing the why and how to succeed.
So, what are the real benefits?
Through the qualitative behavioural mission part of our research, it’s obvious that even almost perfect products have failed to truly capitalise in these new growth markets because of reasons unconnected to their actual taste, feel or, for the most part, look. And all that despite having huge brand names behind them.
For example, Corona has long been known as a delicious and refreshing summer beer but when launching Corona Cero, their zero alcohol alternative, some consumers missed it entirely.
It looked like a quality Corona product; the adverts looked like Corona products; and, while many people trusted the quality of the Corona branding associated with ‘sunny refreshment’, it didn’t stand out as a non-alcoholic drink and drive immediate interest to purchase from its benefits.
Adoption increased dramatically, however, once consumers had put liquid to lips and learned about the use of natural ingredients and its other benefits.
Beyond the great taste and naturalness of Cero, there is clearly an opportunity to push the benefits of non-alcoholic beer more.
People mentioned avoiding hangovers and improving capacity; being able to drive; and being healthy; while still replicating the drinking experience and feeling included socially as key reasons they might make a switch from their current beer of choice. But few of these were tapped into in the original promotions.
It’s worth remembering that this isn’t just another beer or refreshing drink, it’s a lifestyle choice.
We have seen this very effectively achieved with the rise of hard seltzers, such as Truly and White Claw, which are aimed at a younger generation looking to drink alcohol in healthier ways.
“Flavour and refreshment are the key drivers for hard seltzer consumption, followed by more dietary factors like low-carb and low-calorie,” says Brandy Rand, chief strategy officer at the IWSR Drinks Market Analysis.
Put simply, many consumers want a light, refreshing drink that is low in calories and free of allergens – and these benefits are always clearly spelled out on the packaging of these seltzer products.
But what do you use it for?
While it is a trick that some alcohol brands need to get bolder with, the soft drink scene can be just as tough a market to crack and being seen as too multi-purpose can become a hindrance.
San Pellegrino are renowned for their mineral water and Italian sparkling drinks but there were barriers to growth for their new zero calorie Essenza range that weren’t immediately obvious on launch.
Catalyx perception maps showed that consumers felt Essenza was a quality product which perfectly fitted the category and embodied the brand’s premiumness.
People loved the packaging, the taste and it even appealed to them on an emotive level. So what could possibly affect its growth?!
Catalyx behavioural missions highlighted that while consumers were indeed very fond of the product, they were not entirely sure which occasions it was intended for.
Was this a new healthy drinks mixer to use with alcohol or just a thirst-quenching soft drink at lunch, for instance? Was it something to drink daily or saved for a special occasion to impress friends?
Whether picking one horse or both, it was clear that San Pellegrino needed to work a little harder to help people find its natural place in their lifestyle.
Basically, has your product brand got clear usage occasions and are you maximising these usage opportunities through WOW communication?
Building confidence in the best decisions for growth
From our multi-method crowdsourced approach at Catalyx, we are able to provide laser targeted recommendations to unlock more growth for products and brands.
Both case studies above, Cero and Essenza, were clearly quality products ready for the growing health drinks market – but both needed to be bolder with their benefit and usage messaging.
In the hyper competitive drinks market, stand out placement and findability also remains king – and that’s not just about relying on top of the page listings or prime supermarket retail estate. Even with the best product in the world you are going to struggle with product adoption if people can’t find it when looking or their attention isn’t grabbed amongst the competition.
With our use of meticulous quantitative and behaviourally qualitative market auditing, our reports can reinforce a brand’s product confidence while highlighting the areas that might need a little more thought and attention for growth.
This helps decision makers to really take a rounded look at potential, new or low growth products with fresh eyes and fight their corner with budget and promotion decisions.
Where next for health drinks?
Trusted brands are hugely important and never to be underestimated, of course, but when you are entering a market that is thirstily searching for healthy and natural products, it is absolutely essential that your messaging is crystal clear and targeted to that audience. It is a market where authenticity and evidence are more important than most, so don’t be shy with the benefits.
At Catalyx, we have the tools to make this process quicker, more thorough and more accurate – saving you internal company conflict and lowering overall costs.
Shazia Ginai brings fresh insight to Catalyx as new chief growth officer
An exciting new chapter begins for Catalyx in November, with Shazia Ginai joining our award-winning, tech-enabled marketing strategy and insights agency as chief growth officer.
With a wealth of experience as chief executive of neuroanalytics and research firm, Neuro-Insight UK, plus prior roles at GHD and Proctor & Gamble, Shazia will be leading our newly-established growth team.
“Shazia brings with her a really broad experience of both client-side knowledge and agency side executive leadership,” says Guy White, chief executive and founder of Catalyx.
“Shazia will be heading up a new team within Catalyx that has been established to continue to accelerate our already highly successful growth trajectory in the short and longer term. I can’t wait to welcome her to the team.”
On her decision to join Catalyx, Shazia says: “When I was sent the role for chief growth officer at Catalyx I absolutely had to put my hat in the ring. What Guy White and his team have created is a brilliant example of leading-edge innovation that can truly unlock growth for brands.
“This is an opportunity that doesn’t come round often. I’m excited to begin this new chapter of driving growth in a business with limitless potential.”
Shazia currently serves as chair of research industry diversity body Colour of Research, sits on the Market Research Society diversity and inclusion council and is co-founder of the Women in Research accelerate programme.
Unlock your humans to supercharge your recommendations for growth
Frustrated by the process of turning data into action to unlock the true potential of your product or innovation?
Wherever you are in your product or innovation cycle, understanding your consumer helps navigate the best action to drive your innovation and the success of your product in-market.
But getting to a clear decision requires impactful recommendations. A big responsibility that sits with Insight Professionals like yourself to deliver successfully.
At Catalyx, we’re passionate about generating insight that is actionable and empowers your recommendations to drive winning decisions. Decisions that will delight your consumers and unlock future growth.
So, we take the complex and make it actionable. And we validate the action with the why.
In fact, we’ve innovated a systemised approach from years of expertise to consistently ensure your credibility when making recommendations to internal stakeholders. Allowing you to put the why of the consumer at the heart of your brand and business.
Activating your crowd of humans
We believe that in a world where 95% of innovation fails you need the voice of many, not a few, to validate your direction.
So we’ve designed a robust mixed method systemised growth model. We capture consumer human reality through a combined behavioural, emotional, critical opinion, and projective desire methodological approach.
This is supported by a rigorous analytical framework to turn consumer data into actionable insight and a codification framework to expertly quantify qualitative human response for impact.
And then, we give you WOW insights. Insights that open your mind to new perspectives and possibilities.
And we bring your human consumers to life in powerful ways that will inspire your internal stakeholders.
We could go into all the details of how and why we do this, but we’d much rather show you.
So coming up…
We’ve been conducting our own research on the products and topics of the moment.
Thanks to our partnership with market-leading brand, Haleon, we’ve assessed a range of key innovations and products across a breadth of exciting categories to bring you the how of our approach.
Over the coming months, we’ll share smart insights across a range of topical categories – from menopausal products to the latest innovations in non-alcoholic beverages, from changes in the perception of health to unlocking saturated categories with tech – and with each example, we will explain how we got to the recommendation.
These examples will evidence our process and spotlight insights that will shift the dial and drive confident decision-making. Something we will enable you to do too.
And of course, you’ll get a sneak peek of the type of industry-winning reporting you’ll be able to share with your decision-makers, and the chance to dive deeper with our team of sparky experts if you want to know more.
So, strap yourself in, and we’ll show you exactly what you need to make recommendations with impact.
How Catalyx use IHUTs to unlock growth for clients
At Catalyx, we are well-known for using collective intelligence and crowdsourcing to capture and synthesise qualitative data at quantitative scale.
And, in doing so, we get far closer to the consumer reality, which helps us to provide exceptional recommendations that unlock greater growth for our clients.
In fact, we guarantee that our recommendations unlock growth for our clients. With money back if they don’t.
Perhaps less known, is that Catalyx regularly helps our clients run In-Home Use Tests (IHUTs).
We see IHUTs as a core part of our Product Growth system – either used in isolation or more often as part of a wider combination of consumer data capture to help our clients truly understand what consumers want and need, and how they react at the moment of consumption.
We have worked with food producers, personal care brands, dishwashing brands, feminine care manufacturers and many more (even an in-home kidney testing device).
In each case, the recommendations coming from our IHUT approach have formed a central part of the client’s growth strategy and brand asset or product optimisation approach.
So, if you would like to do an IHUT, or learn how to make your product portfolio grow faster, more efficiently, please do contact our team.
A cost of living crisis is not the time to stop investing in innovation – part three
A cost of living crisis provides an OPPORTUNITY to generate successful innovation.*
*Optimize your innovation and thrive in an inflationary environment and beyond.
This week, we’re focusing on why you should be optimizing your innovation right now.
Innovating with success is a challenge at ANY time.
Despite millions being spent on research, 95% of innovations fail.
Despite that, a cost of living crisis is not the time to stop investing in innovation – and here’s why…
Consumers are, understandably, more critical in their decision making during a pricing crisis.
So, at a time when the small shifts don’t make an impact, you’ll have the opportunity to push your future innovations to more creative and relevant transformations by bringing the consumer into your innovation process right now.
Pricing comes into laser sharp focus with consumers making smarter choices on benefit and relevance during economically challenging times, so brands need to differentiate in significant ways to maintain or grow their position in market.
And this is where innovation comes in…
Innovation that meets consumers’ needs in completely new and powerful ways will win not just in times of crisis but will also help shape the future.
Putting consumers at the heart of your innovation to drive and optimize, will ensure your future product taps into the hearts of your consumers.
At Catalyx, our award-winning Consumer Activation System has all the tools to enable you to optimize your product innovation. For instance:
Rank and Enhance (focused)
Have you got numerous early-stage concept ideas? Before you whittle them down, you want a consumer check to ensure your innovation won’t fail in a tough economic environment where consumers are making hard choices about where to spend their money. You want a quick check for which ones rank higher and how to enhance them to better meet consumer need. Well, use our Rank and Enhance (focused) tool.
Rank and Enhance (complete)
You’ve crafted concepts but you need to ensure you have consumer input to rank against purchase drivers – and you need to know how to enhance them to better meet consumer need in this inflationary environment. Consumer input at this stage is important to prevent your innovation failing and give you the direction for success in an environment where consumers are making tough choices about what to spend their money on. Here’s where our Rank and Enhance (complete) helps.
Evolve and Elevate
Input your consumer voice into early-stage concepts to evolve and elevate them into transformational innovation, so that you can win with consumers against the cheaper competition and shape the future. The Catalyx Evolve and Elevate will do just that with your consumers. It will provide a deep dive into knowing how and why they should be evolved to maximize your success.
Iterative Concept Builder
Consumers are making smart choices about product purchases, so what you put into the market needs to meet consumer needs and expectations that will make them choose product over price. Build your product innovation with your consumers, so every element of your product – from benefit to execution – is delivering on relevance. The Catalyx Iterative Concept Builder is designed to put your consumer at the heart of the innovation process through an iterative process to end up with the most successful combination of concept elements. Find out how this comes to life.
Behavioural Concept Test
In an inflationary environment where consumers’ behaviour is changing based on smart choices about what to prioritise spending money on and where to cut costs, behavioural testing can play a crucial role to have confidence in purchase intent. Using our Behavioural Concept Test will enable you to go beyond claimed response and check your product wins against the competition in a real life-like setting. Discover how the Catalyx Behavioural Concept Test can help you to unlock your crowd.
Behavioural Pricing Test
Pricing at purchase is a huge contention for brands, retailers and consumers in this inflationary market. We’re seeing pricing wars between brands and retailers in some markets. We know consumers are increasingly looking for the cheapest prices of products they need. Therefore, behaviourally testing your pricing changes before launching them in-market will enable you to know if you can still win against the competition with the price changes. Use our Catalyx Behavioural Pricing Test to do this in a real life-like setting for the confidence that you’ll still win in market.
To conclude, we hope that following our cost of living blog series has shown you that, even in the toughest of markets or economies, it is possible to unlock growth for your brand with the help of Catalyx systemized approach using our award-winning smart technology and our sparky, curious people.
Let us show you how you can maximize, discover and optimize your brand offering today. Contact the Catalyx team to discover how we can help you to grow even in the most challenging markets.
Discover how to drive consumer engagement in a cost of living crisis – part two
Win on brand, not only on price*
*Take the focus off price and generate customer loyalty for your brand
In part one of our cost of living crisis series, we highlighted how Catalyx can maximise the success of your product portfolio even in the toughest of markets.
Now we focus on the importance of consumer engagement to maintain and build customer loyalty for your brand when increased prices are forcing selection of spending. How can you ensure your brand is top of the mind for consumers in an inflationary environment?
It’s very clear that consumers are prioritising the brands they love, while cutting costs by switching to cheaper products where there is less loyalty.
So it’s more important than ever to know how to win with consumers by making the best strategic choices that your consumers will love.
Price can quickly become the main thing that businesses are competing against, so it’s essential to stay close to your core audience and build the value proposition of your products.
Be clear about your consumer response
Importantly, you need to know your audience’s thoughts, feelings, desires and actions during these turbulent times.
Here are just a few examples of consumer reactions to the current cost of living crisis…
There are some consumers who can’t do anything but afford a certain price for a product:
“To save money we have switched to a lot of own branded foods and are shopping at Aldi. It seems to be the cheapest and great quality food. I have also stopped using my dryer and am drying all wash loads outside although come winter this won’t be possible.”
But there are many consumers who are making smart choices and not changing their behaviour if the product they usually buy is a priority – sticking with the brand they love even when times are hard:
“I think everyone is struggling and the purse strings are tighter, but I wouldn’t cut off my Netflix.”
While others can afford it, but change some spending behaviours because they’re anticipating what might happen. They take on the behaviours of people who have less money, but can be persuaded because they have money to spend:
“We have noticed the price increases when it comes to food and drink and have started to make some cutbacks. We’re not struggling but have chosen to be proactive and start making little changes now and see how things go as prices continue to rise.”
When people are having to, or choosing to, make smart choices through prioritising what they spend their money on, the emotional drivers and need for relevance becomes heightened.
It’s important to bring the consumer voice into this to focus your efforts on how your brand can be making a difference to consumers’ lives. Can you enable them to focus on what matters? Make their lives easier? Or simply bring a moment of joy to their day?
Driving engagement by providing your consumers with exactly what they need and desire will generate brand loyalty and growth for your brand.
First, you need to navigate the strategic choices needed to make this happen.
Using our systemised approach, through our award-winning Consumer Activation System, we can guarantee you’ll discover the strategic choices for growth in an inflationary environment. For instance:
Play in the right places
To ensure growth you need to stay close to your core audience because their behaviours are vulnerable to change in an inflationary environment. Use the Catalyx Category Where To Play module to be aware of shifts in category and how to make strategic choices that will ensure you’re playing in the right places against a backdrop of consumer change.
How to win?
Savvy brands will be asking consumers to make ‘smart choices’. To do this, you’ll need to know how to win with consumers as they prioritise the brands that they feel most engaged with. Understand how your brand can cut through the pricing noise with engagement that is emotionally driven, which will override their rational pricing choices. Brands will need to be brave, bold, and creative in their messaging. What may have worked in the status quo will not be as successful now, so you need to work out how to invest in smart ways to make your money go further. You’ll also need to know how to adjust the nuances for your different consumer groups. Catalyx’s Consumer How To Win enables you to make these smart strategic choices.
Discover unmet needs
In a testing economic environment where consumers aren’t in auto drive when choosing products, meeting consumer unmet needs will have significant impact to drive product purchase. To quickly respond with innovation that you know will drive growth for your product portfolio, you’ll need to not only understand what the top unmet needs are but have solution territories and ideas to springboard innovation from
Innovation fails more often than it succeeds, particularly in an environment where price is king. Your consumers can help you go from a blank page to innovation territories that matter to them and help you to tap into growth, even in a tough economic environment.
Let us show you how to discover the strategic choices that will help you to drive consumer engagement. Contact the Catalyx team today and find out how we can help you to grow even in the most challenging markets.
Catalyx now takes its place as one of the most innovative insight companies in the world
We are delighted to announce that Catalyx has joined the Top 50 Most Innovative Suppliers in the 2022 GRIT report, and we have yet again made the Top 20 most innovative Strategic Consultancies list.
Entering the highly acclaimed category for the first time means that our growing tech-enabled insights agency now takes its place as one of the most innovative insight companies in the world.
Having won Best New Product Innovation in 2021 in The Marketing Research and Insight Excellence Awards powered by Quirks for our Consumer Activation System™, the recognition as one of the most innovative insight suppliers in the world further demonstrates our innovative drive.
“At Catalyx we don’t stand still,” says founder and CEO, Guy White. “We are always innovating and bring a disruptive and unique approach to the research industry.
“Our innovative and systemised approach to research ensures that we always bring the consumer voice into brand. At Catalyx, we don’t just sell on method, we focus on the outcomes of research to produce actionable insights that allow quicker decisions, solve problems, and maximise brand growth.”
Alongside this outstanding new accolade for Catalyx, we have once again been included in GRIT’s annual most Strategic Consultancy list for the fourth year, moving up seven places to 11th place.
The move highlights our continued commitment to turning insight into actionable outputs that unlock brand growth.
“We are incredibly proud of what we have achieved over the past few years at Catalyx,” says Guy.
“Rising up the ranks in the Strategic Consultancy list is testament to the work of our talented team of brand strategists, delivering for our clients time and time again. We are delighted to receive this accolade.”
- Want to find out how Catalyx can help to unlock brand growth for your business? Get in touch and speak to our talented team of experts.