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Market Research - Page 2

  • Presentation of the results of the co-design initiative for CTIFL and UNFD

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    In these times of economic uncertainty, disruptive innovation is increasingly essential for creating a competitive edge. At Repères we are convinced that innovation must be conducted in collaboration with the consumers to design in a meaningful and differentiating manner. Our prospective and interactive co-design protocol calls on the imagination of hyper creative consumers (recruited in the virtual world of Second Life) to help brands find new sources of inspiration.

    So far we haven’t yet had the opportunity to present actual results from co-design initiatives since these are highly confidential. Today, thanks to CTIFL (Centre Technique Interprofessionnel des Fruits et Légumes – Inter-professional Technical Centre for Fruit and Vegetables) and UNFD (Union nationale des syndicats de détaillants en fruits, légumes et primeurs – National Union of Fruit and Vegetable Retailers) we have a unique opportunity to present the details of the process and its results.

    I will let Emilie Labidoire, the head of the Repères Communities Department continue:

    Our last project conducted for CTIFL and UNFD made it possible for us to work on the design and the offering at the same time, with a 3D model of 2 proposals from among 10.

    Point of departure of the project

    To adapt to new modes of consumption UNFD intends to make points of sale of fresh fruit and vegetables denser in areas of intense urban traffic through the creation of mobile outdoor kiosks and/or the setting up of dedicated gondolas with traditional retailers.
    This is because, in a climate of a decline in the consumption of fresh fruit and vegetables, UNFD must take up a number of challenges:
    - How to promote the purchase of fresh fruit and vegetables?
    - How to reduce preparation constraints?
    - How to enhance the image of fruit and vegetables (healthy, simple, quick, etc.)?
    - How to prevent consumption among the young from declining further?

    The Protocol


    The strong points

    .Greatly increases the potential of “imaginative” communities from the virtual world of Second Life® by injecting prospective visions in partnership with the agency Proâme
    . Engages consumers in brainstorming on a collaborative, exploratory blog for two weeks. Presents the benefits of asynchronous communication and of a widened time frame allowing ideas to mature.

    The Designs

    As a result of the brainstorming session and the joint analyses of Proâme-Repères, 10 detailed proposals for kiosks and innovative fruit and vegetable corners were presented to UNFD and CTIFL, a working tool for a highly fragmented sector (different sizes and means according to geographic situation).

    The two proposals selected were then modelled on Second Life® to bring to life these concepts and propose a 3-D illustration. Instead of static boards, the client and vegetable retailer teams are able to discover a space and to fully experience it to test the ergonomics, the positioning and interactions between the retailer and the client.

    We presented this work at the Esomar Consumer Insights 2009 conference in Dubai and we are looking forward to seeing the kiosk open, probably in the autumn 2009!

    You may also read the interview with Catherine Roty from CTFIL, whom we warmly thank, on the site dedicated to the activity of Second Life.

  • SEMO 2008 : Repères Wins Two Grand Prix des Etudes Awards

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    moelleux.jpglogo Emotional Monitoring.jpg

    Last november, we had the honour of being awarded two trophies at the Grand Prix des Etudes Marketing event organised by Marketing Magazine and SEMO:
    . The bronze trophy in the “Field Research” category for the chocolate cake prefmap conducted for the R&D department of Kraft Biscuits,
    . and the silver trophy in the “International Research” category for the Thalys Emotional Monitoring project.

    We would like to thank our clients (especially Marie-Christine Marcuz and Cédric Liège from Kraft Biscuits as well as Béatrice Pâques from Thalys) for their confidence in our projects.

    We are particularly proud of these two prizes:

    . The Fieldwork prize gives us the opportunity of showcasing the high level of expertise of Repères (by nature less conducive to obtaining media coverage than our recent developments): the development of sophisticated research protocols involving major logistics, especially in the case of product tests. The prize-wining project was part of a preference-mapping approach in which each respondent had to test the entire group of products, in this case 15 varieties of chocolate cake. We used a protocol in the form of sessions, each of the 250 respondents being pre-recruited and returning two Saturdays in a row to finally taste all of the products according to a balanced user experience planning.
    This complex data gathering process allows for a highly enhanced level of analysis: identification of the key preference drivers, modelling of the links between consumer appreciation and sensorial profiles of products, updating of consumer segments having specific organoleptic expectations.

    . The “International” Thalys Emotional Monitoring prize was awarded to us for our work in creating and developing the Emotional Monitoring tool, a real breakthrough in understanding and monitoring imaginary dimensions associated with brands. Initially developed for Moët Hennessy this tool is now used by several major advertisers, especially internationally.

    Without going into the details of the Thalys strategy, we may evoke the contributions provided by such an Emotional Monitoring study conducted simultaneously in several countries:

    - to identify and quantify the emotional background built by the brand among its clients:

    o to understand what customers feel about the brand at an emotional level,
    o to measure the individual differences in this emotional experience to know all the existing perceptions of the brand and how much they weigh respectively,
    o to measure the emotional tie created between the client and the brand thanks to quantitative emotional indicators.

    - To put into perspective the perception of customers with the brand platform and to identify convergences, dissimilarities but also the potential and risk for the platform

    - To have a global international perspective (to identify the federating trans-national identity for all countries) and by country (to identify the national specifics in terms of expectations and sensibilities) in view of a common strategy to be adapted for each country.

    In addition to this prize, Emotional Monitoring was the focus of special attention at SEMO: We had the pleasure of presenting a workshop on this method with Hélène Coric, Head of Strategic Research and Planning at Heineken France, whom we thank warmly. The objective was to relate the case study of Heineken's use over time of Emotional Monitoring as a complement to quantitative image tracking. We were thus able to present the benefits of the Emotional method, especially when used in synergy with more traditional approaches such as image tracking.

    For further information about this method, do not hesitate to contact Catherine Schutz, Partner at Reperes ou Sandrine McClure, head of the qualitative department.

  • The Home Use Blog or the Blog at the Service of Innovation

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    In January 2006, during the National Marketing Day organised by Adetem, Romain Moronzier from Danone Research told me about a problem his team was tackling: How to evaluate the relevance of disruptive technology with consumers, namely when it implies new habits or gestures.

    The problem of testing disruptive innovation is indeed a recurring problem in market research: confronted with innovation, the consumer can turn out to be a poor evaluator and to give arbitrary answers that say nothing about the future success or failure of the innovation being tested.

    The question raised by Danone Research reminds me of a conversation I had a few months earlier with Christophe Rebours, the founder of the management and innovation agency In Process. Christophe mentioned the launch of the talking rabbit Nabaztag and explained to me that with such an atypical product the approach adopted had consisted of not conducting a test with consumers but of launching the product on a small scale to observe whether or not it would find its place within the community of first users.

    The best way to find out whether an innovation is going to work, is to make it live. However, our customers can’t afford to repeat launches “just to see”. With Danone Research we looked for an approach which, with a reduced cost and in a short time, would enable us to test innovations by integrating two dimensions which seem essential to the relevance of the innovation test: experience and exchange.

    It is a fact that in the absence of concrete experience consumers find it hard to anticipate:
    . they find themselves locked up within their perceptive frameworks based on a past experience and one probably not relevant to the innovation being tested,
    . in addition when the concept is being tested they tend to call upon rational thoughts, whereas the body, sensations and emotions are insufficiently relied on.
    At the same time, the manufacturer also ignores how the innovation will be appropriated or used by the future consumer (concerning this François Laurent was telling me how surprised clients who had commissioned an experiment with television on mobile phones were: the majority of uses were not outside the home, as expected, but in bed)

    The dimension of exchange is another component we believe to be essential for testing innovations: the importance of the impact of word-to-mouth between consumers is growing. Today, the asymmetric relation between a communicating brand and the consumer as a simple receiver is no longer accepted. Consumers refer more to their peers, namely via the Blogosphere which provides them with a new realm of expression, exchange, reference and will soon help them in their decisions too.

    Our research protocol therefore had to respect these two conditions of experience and exchange:
    . a prototype tested in the conditions of actual use,
    . with communication between users and namely a dissemination of uses and perceptions.

    That is how we came to launch Home Use Blog: a community of consumers who test a product and share their experiences on a Blog. At the same time as the consumer Blog, a discussion forum enables exchanges within the project team (client company, market research institute…).

    The Home Use Blog protocol is simple:
    . we recruit 10 to 15 consumers,
    . each participant is interviewed separately and is instructed on how to use the community Blog. Participants are given a product to test during a given period, 10 days to a fortnight in the studies already conducted,
    . during this test period respondents share on a daily basis their experiences on the Blog, via texts, images, emoticons, etc. Thus generating an effect of amplification and acceleration (one use test generates x tests with immediate validation or invalidation) and an effect of regulating and testing the duration of opinions and practises.

    The findings gathered are extremely instructive especially thanks to the special aspects of the Blog as a communication tool, it being at the same time private and social. And unlike focus groups where the effects of leading may perturb the reliability of the information, the experiences or the opinions of the other participants are taken onboard and reinterpreted but without altering their individuality.

    In the end, the Home Use Blog is a wonderful, adaptable and quick experimental tool, in line with clients’ timing, an impressive tool for exchange (between consumers, between consumers and manufacturers and between the members of the project team) and for getting close to consumers. This protocol is perfectly in synch with the strategy adopted by brands of placing the consumer at the heart of the innovation process.

    The use of the Blog as an information gathering tool in innovation tests has a promising future before it. We would like to conduct experiments with larger samples of consumers soon.

    This method was the object of a joint Danone Research / Repères presentation at SEMO, the market research exhibition which was held on 7th and 8th November 2006.

  • The First Market Survey Company in Second Life

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    A new adventure is beginning for my company: Repères has just established itself in Second Life.

    Repères Second Life is the 1st market survey company in this world, but not the first company to have started doing business there. Brands such as Nike, Adidas and Toyota, communication agencies such as Leo Burnett, a press agency with a permanent correspondent (Reuters) and design studios are already in Second Life…

    Our presence in Second Life is therefore a necessity:

    . our signature “passion for research” takes on all of its meaning there: Second Life is a new world where practically everything remains to be discovered and built,

    . as its name suggests, Second Life is not just a game but it is also a true extension of reality. The avatars that explore it and live there are not virtual but are the real expressions of a part of our humanity and gaining knowledge of this is an inherent part of our research work.

    As an added bonus, by creating Repères Second Life, we take full advantage of the pleasures of Second Life: discovering new things, flying, exchanging and creating new ideas and having the feeling that we are pioneers…

    Attached is our press communiqué concerning Repères Second Life (This text was drafted by Marie Juan Lallier, who is my life partner and takes an active part in the development of the methodologies of Repères whilst running her own practise as a psychologist).