Specialized Solutions

Azure’s in-market simulation combines our strengths in Market Research and our the on-ground execution capabilities to deliver a unique solution that helps clients gather intelligence for new product ideas or fresh marketing concepts.

The Azure solution differs from traditional research approaches in two key ways:

  • We use a combination of passive and active research techniques. In passive observation, we listen to consumer questions, observe body language and examine behavior without asking any direct questions. This provides unbiased insights because consumers are not ‘guarded’ in their responses
  • We simulate a real-life environment which mimics the actual setting in which a client will eventually introduce their new idea or concept. For instance, if the concept being tested is an FMCG product, the solution will include simulating a retail setting where consumers can come and interact with the product, while being observed passively

What it can be used forAzure’s In-market Simulation can be used for evaluating new ideas associated with product innovation (including new products or variants and packaging) or new marketing concepts (fulfillment models or transactional models). The insight gained from using this approach provides clients with valuable customer intelligence, which in turn can be used to create high value differentiation strategies designed to drive consumer adoption.

How it is implementedThe Azure solution is highly customizable and scalable. Implementation involves four key steps:

  • Design:In this stage, we define critical learning objectives. For instance, if we are evaluating a marketing concept, this stage will include creating a blue print of how the marketing model is intended to be implemented in a real-world scenario. Following this, critical success metrics are defined, against which the viability of the new marketing concept or model is assessed
  • Set-up: This stage involves setting up the physical ‘simulation scenario’. This includes creating all materials and infrastructure necessary to create a ‘test environment’ that simulates the client’s go-to- market plan. For instance, when testing a new product, this stage will include sourcing actual new product SKUs, creating POS materials and setting up a retail or transactional scenario that is similar to the actual retail environment. The stage also involves the recruitment and selection of research and other ground staff for actual implementation
  • Implementation: Depending on design, implementation can include the following activities:
    • Home demonstrations, door-to- door interactions or in-store counters: this is where the new product is demonstrated and researchers observe initial reactions
    • Retail kiosks, door-to- door sales or in-store sales: At this stage, the new product is available for sale and researchers are placed to observe purchase barriers or facilitators
    • Repurchase/repeat sales: The product is now available for repurchase and researchers gather feedback on the product after its initial consumption
    • Active Research: This stage is part of the implementation process and includes traditional research approaches to gather feedback on consumer experience. Key
      activities include Focus Groups and Surveys. For instance, if the solution is testing a new product, research could be conducted with consumers based on gender, age or other demographic characteristics. It could also be conducted based on behavioral distinctions such as re-purchasers versus non re-purchasers

    BenefitsAzure’s ‘In-market Simulation’ provides a unique opportunity to test products or marketing concepts in simulated settings that are close to real-world consumer environments. This approach sheds valuable insight into consumer behavior and is fundamental in the development of new concepts and go-to- market strategies.