Print Concept Development At The Fuzzy-Front End
Using virtual-reality technology to better understand and predict reader decisions
Research Director, Treiber + Partners, Germany.
Head of Market Research, Burda Publishing Center GmbH, Germany.
CHANGES IN CONCEPT RESEARCH – A BRIEF OVERVIEW
Concept development in general shows the following structural features:
- a more or less vast complexity of combining critical elements and components into meaningful concepts for new products and services;
- a resulting multitude of available concept choice options;
- high uncertainty about likely reactions among target groups on the demand side (e.g. among readers of magazines);
- increasing time and competitive pressures.
This is even more true for print products where market saturation, product overlap, development costs, and decision-making risks tend to become discouragingly high, at least for mass-market circulation products. Print concept development should thus be particularly receptive to advances in the decision-making process through new research tools and techniques. These come from several independent directions, and converge in providing print concept development with a new paradigm for analytically sophisticated studies of reader behavior at very early stages of the development process.