Didn’t catch the Highlight team or their session at The Market Research Event this year? We’ve got your back with the event “highlights” you don’t want to miss.
This was Highlight’s first foray into booths and speaking sessions at larger market research events and it certainly won’t be the last. Read on for an inside look at the speaking session with Georgia-Pacific that garnered a packed audience and the unique booth that stood out in a sea of research solutions.
Revolutionizing Product Testing Leading to Superior Product Success with Georgia-Pacific x Highlight
Team Highlight was so excited to put on a speaking session with Georgia-Pacific whose household names include Quilted Northern® bath tissue, Brawny® paper towels, Dixie® cups, and more. Kim Sackey of Georgia-Pacific and Ted Benakis of Highlight clued the audience into what they may not have known - the amount of value Georgia-Pacific extracts from insights based on in-home physical product testing methodology and how this gives them a leg up in consistent product success.
In this session, Kim and Ted shared how the Georgia Pacific team has revolutionized their approach to in-home physical product testing and how they are able to gain competitive insights on a category landscape by placing products in their target consumers’ homes. Read on for a few of the topics they chatted about.
Ted: So Kim, help us get to know you a little better - tell us about your role and team at Georgia-Pacific.
Kim: Georgia-Pacific is a leading manufacturer of household paper products, with a portfolio of iconic brands such as Dixie, Angel Soft, Brawny, Quilted Northern, Sparkle, and Vanity Fair. As part of the Consumer Knowledge team for the Georgia-Pacific Consumer Business it’s my job to bring our end consumer to the forefront of business decisions as we strive to maximize growth. It’s really all about helping the company define who we are trying to serve with our offerings - who our target consumer is - and then bringing that person to life for the organization in a way that builds understanding and empathy. It is only then that we can begin to develop differentiated solutions that delight and add value to her life. And as consumers change over time and are bombarded with more options in all aspects of life it is critical that consumer learning be an ongoing process so that we stay in lock step with evolving needs.
Ted: Now, zooming out a bit and taking a wider look at Georgia-Pacific as a business. How does product testing fit into the organization’s strategy and why is it so important?
Kim: Ted, product testing is critical! We know that consumers purchase (or hire) our products to do a specific job. One key role that product testing plays is enabling us to put specificity around what the consumer wants. It allows us to make the link between what we hear consumers say they want, to how we design that product in our labs, and then how we produce that product in our mills. Product testing also allows us to gauge how differentiated our solution is from other alternatives. With this knowledge, we can estimate sales, source of volume, and brand growth. Lastly, with a regular cadence of product testing, we can identify and respond to consumers’ changing needs. As an example, COVID drove substantial changes in consumer attitudes and behavior around paper product usage. Through product testing, we can keep a pulse on changes in consumer expectations.
Ted: Very interesting! So safe to say, this is a very important component of the business - a lot rides on how successfully you and your team can execute.
Kim: Yes, absolutely.
Ted: Awesome, so this is where our partnership comes into play. So as I mentioned earlier, Highlight is an in-home product testing platform and without getting too into the weeds here- we offer a proprietary network of consumers across the united states who have signed up with us that we can recruit on-demand, ship products directly to their doorsteps, and collect feedback from them in the form of surveys, photos, and videos.
So Kim, as you know we are pretty proud of the studies we have run with you all up to this point, and of course, we have a strong partnership with Georgia-Pacific, but from your point of view, how has Highlight helped you revolutionize and improve how you approach and execute product testing at Georgia-Pacific?
Kim: So, naturally, product testing is not new to Georgia-Pacific. But it has historically been a resource-intensive, long preparation and execution time, and high-cost endeavor. Working with Highlight, we have been able to significantly reduce the time to results, confidently hand over many of the time-consuming logistical activities, and obtain learning for notably less investment. I’ll just mention a couple of specifics. Because each product test costs less, we are able to field more of them. This opens the door for the organization to experiment and iterate, and increases our chances for successful innovation. Because Highlight results are available in real-time through their dashboard, Georgia-Pacific teams can access the data and make decisions or pivot faster. We can also manage timelines and internal expectations better by also having a clear picture on where a study-in-progress stands.
So, the automation and technology that were previously not applied to large-scale home-use tests are now available. And not to be missed is Highlight’s expertise in logistics. They are able to procure market product from locations across the country and repack that product for testing in any way needed to meet our expectations. Their centrally located hub makes it easy to ship to consumers anywhere in the country for studies that are national in scope. Best of all, even when these services, which are often costly add-ons with other vendors, are included, their total costs are still much lower.
We have enjoyed such a great partnership with Highlight that their reach within our organization has grown beyond the Consumer Knowledge for one Georgia-Pacific business to researchers in other businesses and to our product development team. Basically, we are making sure that any group involved in product testing at Georgia-Pacific is aware of their capabilities.
A Look Into the Colorful Booth of Highlight
Thanks for stopping by the booth at TMRE. If you didn’t get to this time, catch us at our next conference appearance in 2023. At the booth, we gave brands an inside look into the Highlight portal and showed them how it can be customized to support unique in-home product testing needs. Learn more about the Highlight in-home product testing platform on our website.
We’ll see you next time at TMRE! Until then, reach out the Highlight team if you have any questions or would like to see how the Highlight Platform can help your brand skyrocket your innovation with in-home product testing.