RI’s exhaustive yearly study of new product launches — and we’re talking approximately 30,000 in the last three years — have yielded valuable lessons in how CPGs should approach product development and marketing. The firm sees successful products (and the avoidance of costly mistakes) boiling down to a three-step process:
- Gaining an understanding of the deep context of consumer attitudes, usage and shopping habits;
- Developing business plans to meet consumer needs in ways that are incremental, profitable and sustainable;
- Rolling out products that fundamentally change consumer behaviour in a long-lasting way
Continuing forward, IRI sees budget-conscious consumers taking a very deliberate approach to grocery shopping. But that doesn’t necessarily lessen potential gains for CPG innovators that understand the importance of helping consumers live well for less. IRI sees the following new product trends being pervasive in 2014 and into the next few years ahead.
1. Wellness as the foundation
Consumers are seeking opportunities to make their homes, menus, bodies and minds healthier. CPG marketers — including those catering to pet owners — are revving up nutritional profiles, balancing the mind and spirit with sensory stimulation, and doing battle with germs in consumer households.
2. Powering up the ROI
Sheer power is moving the needle with consumers, whether in more potent dishwasher capsules (Cascade Platinum) or “three times more visible lashes” (Maybelline Volum’ Express the Falsies Big Eyes). “Power” can be a direct route to enhanced value perception by giving consumers the wherewithal to get the job done faster, more easily and with better results.
3. Boosting energy
Food and beverage marketers are offering consumers an energy boost, adding protein, caffeine and other power-generating ingredients to existing and new product lines. Dannon Activia Greek and Mountain Dew Kickstart are just two examples.
4. Exciting experiences
Sensory benefits — unexpected flavors and/or textures — can meaningfully boost the excitement profile of products, such as those found in Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts Gone Nutty!, or fresh and mysterious scents offered by Old Spice Wild Collection.
5. Always… an eye on changing demographics
Marketers must serve today’s consumers, but plan to serve the consumer of tomorrow. Consider that, according to PEW Research, 65-and-older consumers will outnumber under-15 consumers worldwide before 2030. Ethnic diversification is also escalating. The Hispanic population will represent 29 percent of the U.S. population by 2050. Likewise, the Asian and African-American populations within the U.S. continue to grow.
Craig Page-Lee is the MD of Posterscope – SA’s leading Out Of Home specialists. He is passionate about retail and has a background in design and architecture and one day dreams of heading off on a world adventure on his motor-cycle.
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