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Exploring Emotions – Summer Sensorials

2013-02

When do we have time to relax, finish a good book, take things easy and just enjoy? Most consumers answer “during my summer vacation!” Since many categories use summer-inspired themes all year round, we wanted to understand more about that strong emotional connection in terms of the senses, in order to help clients with concept development and product design.

Using our patented screener to find sensorially-articulate respondents, and with an innovative methodology including collaging and video uploading of personal reactions, we were able to gather a diverse spectrum of multi-sensorial input. (The study was carried out in October 2012 in the USA) It was fascinating to be able to see from their own videos how consumers immediately contemplate and “let go” as they dive into their memories and associations. Three main themes emerged, each having its own sensorial and emotional connection (sensorial profile).


RELAXATION/CALMNESS
the cherished ‘ME’ moment
PEACEFUL-COMFORTING


EXCITEMENT/ACTION
the need to experience and savour, rejuvenation of body & mind
ZINGY-ENERGETIC


FUN/BONDING
the pleasure of enjoying togetherness & family time
HAPPY-WORRY FREE

Click on the video to see and hear consumers talking about their favourite summer smells!

We also went deeper into the world of SUNCARE, finding out how participants protect and look after their skin, and choose their products. We found that a favourite product brings them into the state of mind of one of the above themes, consciously (e.g. through the advertising) and subconsciously (e.g. through the language and associations evoked by the formulation and scent).

Suncare products look and function similarly, and can even be confusing to consumers who have to choose between levels of protection, application styles, skin types… so in fact, the emotional/sensorial connection is taking the driver seat when making a choice.

In Suncare, as in many categories, standard “product sensory profiling” is already known; new products are developed using either internal or external sensory panels to make sure they meet texture and scent ‘category requirements’. We believe it is possible for products to go beyond standard sensory profiling and do multisensory profiling, taking the whole mix further into the world of the emotions thanks to the direct link to the senses.

Products achieving a perfectly matching sensorial impression (coming from the communication and packaging) and actual product experience (texture, scent, color...) successfully reinforce the consumer’s expectations, clearly position the brand and concept - and will have the highest chances of attracting and keeping consumers for greater market success.

Contact us to see how our unique qualitative approaches can build your understanding of consumer emotions in your category and help fine-tune your marketing and product mix to strengthen the emotional bond via the senses.