Today behavioural economics research is telling us that non-rational thinking drives 95% of what we think and how we behave. It is no longer acceptable to think you can research in a completely rational and logical way, humans are driven more by a fast and automatic style of thinking than we have ever really recognised.
In sensory science, research has been quite academic and focused purely on the associations elicited by the sensory characteristics of products, measured rationally immediately after eating or using a product. We think these direct measures are not the most appropriate.
There are ways to explore consumers’ associations to products in an implicit way, as opposed to explicitly making consumers aware of them and directly asking the relationship it has to a product. One of these methods is the implicit associations test (IAT).
Through this method we capture responses from consumers in a time constrained setting, to truly capture the unconscious associations with the product, brand or pack, before the conscious mind engages. Using IAT we capture the perception as well as the speed with which it was perceived, thus being able to report spontaneous emotions associated to the product.
At Direction First – InSites Consulting we have used the approach to measure emotional responses to products, brands and places, on mobile phones gathering true in the moment contextual insights.
Implicit measurement is a powerful tool to explore and identify relevant characteristics to communicate about your brand or product. If you are still only measuring your product using rational scales, we believe you are missing a deep layer of insight to help you build stronger connections between consumers’ emotions and your products.