The company’s latest report, KlinePulse Consumer Insights of Personal Care Innovation USA 2010 claims to unearth some consumer thoughts and observations that ‘counter what product marketers and manufacturers have long believed about their audience’.
The report is based on extensive research questioning consumers about what they expect from personal care products, thanks to a new methodology of research that focuses on quantifying qualitative results.
According to Kline, the methodology is based on complexity and cognitive sciences, together with cultural anthropology, which is combined to illicit more comprehensive survey responses.
More comprehensive responses
Specific responses highlighted as exemplifying the more comprehensive responses the research team at Kline has received have included:
“If I had an opportunity to talk to an executive of a personal care company, I would tell them that I wish they would invent something that would make my kids want to brush their teeth,” or “…a skin care product that is a combination of Neosporin, Clearasil, and covering makeup.”
Kline believes that responses such as this go much further towards discovering the type of personal care solutions consumers are looking for, while also being specific about the reasons for wanting them.
The survey takes the form of an open-ended question, which is then followed up by a series of other questions specifically related to their initial response.
Innovation is important, but not paramount
From the feedback used in Kline’s current report, the researchers conclude that innovation is actually not of foremost importance to all consumers, with its importance varying between different age and ethnic groups.
Likewise, the report also highlights the fact that some consumers said that innovation has to be balanced with stability and reliability to get the winning combination.
The report also highlights a gap between consumer expectations for innovation and their actual experiences, with respondents stating that they expected innovation combined with environmental and social awareness, while in practice they found sustainability practices to be lacking.
According to Kline, the methodology also enabled the researchers to question the accuracy of the consumer responses, an important factor given the high rate of inaccuracy related to many conventional methodologies.
Thanks to a series of multiple choice and instant-response questions, some contradictions were also highlighted in the responses. According to the researchers, these contradictions did not necessarily indicated inaccuracies, but most often underlined weak signals or emerging trends, or areas that need further research.
More information on the latest Consumer Insights report on personal care innovation in the US is available by directly contacting the Kline Group.