Do your products brilliantly serve the end usage occasion?
How difficult did life use to be?
Want to record a TV series? Thumb through the TV schedule, find a tape, remember to label the video so someone wouldn’t tape over it. Then remember to do exactly the same things the following week. It’s amazing what we did before Sky Plus.
Clearly technology is changing the world. And whilst we might have a little nostalgia for all the things we used to do, there is no doubt that our lives are much easier with it. However, progress brings changing expectations. We are now much more demanding of the products and services we use.
How is this relevant to the FMCG world? Well, companies invest a lot of time, money and effort in the quality and performance of their products. This is, and always will be, incredibly important. But do they invest as much time, money and effort in ensuring their products are brilliantly suited to the usage occasion that they are trying to serve? Why do we ask? Because shoppers don’t always buy the best product, they often buy the most convenient product.
Convenience is not just about time. It is about being ultra relevant for the way in which a product will be used. We call this being Pitch Perfect.
So, how do you ensure your products are pitch perfect?
Know WHEN your product is going to be used. If you are a food, are you pitch perfect for when you will be consumed? For instance, if you are targeting breakfast, are you in individual portions, can you be prepared in less than 2 minutes, can you be consumed standing up, can your pack be easily disposed of? Porridge Pots are a great example of this.
Knowing the rules for winning in your key consumption occasions and having products that brilliantly deliver against these rules is key.
Know WHERE your product is going to be used. Is your product pitch perfect for the environment in which it will be used? For instance, many snacking products are consumed in the car – so can your product be accessed and eaten with one hand? Wrigley’s chewing gum tubs are a great example of this.
How often is your product eaten whilst someone is scrolling on a tablet or smartphone? Are products like crisps, a bit more awkward to eat and leaving grease on fingers, at a disadvantage in a tablet and smartphone driven world?
Often the WHEN and the WHERE combine. For instance, confectionery brands have delivered the perfect ‘TV moment’ product, with their pouch packs.
Know WHO is going to use your product. Are you going to be used by an individual or shared? Are you going to be consumed immediately or over time? A good example of this is the M&S Cake Tubs. Ideally suited to the sharing occasion and ideally suited to grazing consumption over a couple of days – at home or in the workplace.
Finally, as demographics change we will need to serve different types of households. As an industry, we typically design for families. Yet, the number of smaller, particularly single person, households is rising quickly. Do you have the right product and pack size solutions for them?
Increasingly, the ‘best’ product will be the best solution, not necessarily the best in terms of quality. And the best solution is based on who is going to use the product, where and when. To win you will need to be pitch perfect. Are you?
Have a great weekend and speak to you next week.