What is Concept Validation Testing?

August 8, 2019
Tyler Hagler

Product Concept Validation Methods

Trig can help you rapidly test the waters with your product concepts and gain statistical insights into the consumer level of interest, how the product may compete with similar products on the market, and what consumers would be willing to pay for it. This concept testing can be conducted very early into the process, before you have invested significant funds into developing detailed product designs and building prototypes.

Our concept validation process typically involves these phases, once your product concept and potential design variations on that concept are established. As an industrial design firm, Trig can produce the testable concept sketches as a service, or we can receive your design sketches for the survey.

  1. Create testable concept sketches. Testable concept sketches should be intuitive, believable, and visually pleasing. Often we add into that set of sketches that are similar to one or two competitive products currently on the market, which can help in the data interpretation.
  2. Design a survey. Query your target audience to gain data on how the market may respond to your product concept. We have gone beyond just seeking reactions to the product to also assess how consumers may respond to new brands - for example, does the brand invoke a certain emotional reaction and increase the likelihood of the product purchase?
  3. Run the survey. with a large number of individuals who represent your target customer category, with close oversight. We develop custom quality control scripts that are applied during the survey data collection process to ensure we are gaining useful data. We also follow best practices in randomizing how the product concepts are shown to avoid bias.
  4. Gain tangible insights. from the data that align with your key questions. Our most common analyses include assessing level of interest and willingness to purchase each of the set of products shown and conducting pricing analysis (e.g., Van Westendrop pricing analysis), and text analytics for open response questions. For some projects looking to dive deeper, we have done more advanced statistical analyses such as cluster analysis to dig into how customers may fall into subgroups with commonalities to one another. These more advanced statistics may be helpful in fine-tuning how you market your product to different types of customers.

Who needs this kind of product concept testing? We have found this process to be highly valuable to individuals and companies who are exploring new product concepts who are unsure about how their product would compete in the marketplace. They might also need information on how much customers would be willing to pay for the product, who are establishing new brands, or who have a variety of product tweaks and want to see what resonates. This type of analysis is less helpful for companies who already have deep insight into their target customers or may be making incremental changes to their existing products which already have a mature customer base.

Tyler Hagler

As a career industrial designer and innovation practitioner, Ty Hagler has managed hundreds of new product development programs through the process of opportunity identification guided to commercialization.


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