By Greg Lipper • April 6, 2018Comments

Integrating Insights & Activation to Accelerate Innovation

The innovation cycle in most large consumer brand companies today is 24 months, and, in today's "the quick and the dead" world, that's too slow. The reason it is so slow is not a lack of ideas or creativity. It is the disconnected processes and trans-departmental approval processes each new idea has to crawl through before being let loose. The Happi Hug integrates insights and activations to enable a marketing team to test, gain insights, and enhance an innovation in hours, not months.

Here is an example of the current innovation lifecycle:

Ben, a dog food brand manager, has an idea. He wants to borrow a page from the Dollar Shave Club playbook and sell subscriptions of home delivery of dog food to pet owners. He figures that once she has a group of loyal customers taking delivery of dog food every month, his company can sell all sorts of pet products to the same group.

Simple, logical, brilliant! Let's do it! But, no, life can't be that simple. Ben has to prove the offering will be well received, think through cannibalization risk, compare profitability versus existing channels and answer a hundred other questions for a dozen department heads. So, now he has to go through a process that looks something like this:

market research process

And this is just the process for completing the testing of the product concept. There are dozens of other questions that must be answered. For example, what size SKUs, delivery frequency, target consumer profile, how to reach them, and what pricing.

Once Ben is comfortable with those answers, then a test activation campaign has to prove actual consumer adoption levels of various subscription options tested against various consumer segments. And then, finally, two years later, Ben sees his dog food home delivery subscription service launch.

What if we could reduce that cycle to a few weeks with iterative insights in 12-hour cycles?

Step 1) Ben has an idea: 1 minute 

Ben has idea-small

"I bet if we offered free delivery, we could sell bigger bags of dog food!"

Step 2) We define a test market: 5 minutes 

Carless dogowner

Ben figures a good test market would be dog owners who don't have cars. And, on Happi, we know who our users are who have dogs but not cars. If we don't have enough of them, we can build the panel further.

Step 3) Survey to identify qualified prospects. 3 hours

Survey about dogfood

People within the segment can be asked any number of questions. One might be "would you buy bigger bags of dog food if it came with free home delivery?" Those who answer positively are targeted for the promotion. Those who answer negatively can be asked why.

Step 4) Send the offer to qualified prospects. 5 minutes

Hug offer

The offer, or, as we call it, the Hug, presents the user with Ben's offer and only three response options: Yes!, Not Today, and Never.

We call this a Hug for two reasons. First, it showers our users with love by giving them access to offers tailored for them. Second, it helps the client bring the separate insights and activation processes together in one integrated feedback loop.

Step 5) Find out why! 3 hours

post hug survey

Those who tap on Yes! either get a coupon on their phone or are taken to the client's landing page. After they take the offer, they get questions asking if they would buy again. Those who tap on Not Today may get the offer another day and asked why they didn't take it today. Those who tap on Never are surveyed to find out why.

The problem with pure insights approaches is that there is a delta between what people say they want or would do and what they actually do when presented with an offer. The problem with pure activation is that it doesn't provide any consumer feedback or qualitative data. The Happi Hug brings insights and activations together, making both more effective and valuable, and resulting in a refined idea in hours.

Everyone feels better after a hug! Sign up here for a free consultation on how this process can help you innovate faster.

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