Optimizing a new product concept for a CPG manufacturer

We appreciate Escalent’s insights and flexibility and trust them to execute with excellence. They turned around critical research for a high-stakes launch despite a ridiculous timeframe!

Business Issue

A leading manufacturer of infant formula was launching a new flagship product, but senior leadership was unhappy with the rollout plan. It believed its highly specialized product filled an important gap in the market, and it wanted to quickly redefine the concept to ensure the messaging communicated the product’s unique benefits. However, delaying the original launch schedule was not an option.

What We Did

Escalent expedited the evaluation of the product’s name, reasons to buy, benefits, messages and packaging. The methodology required highly specialized sample targets: hundreds of higher-income mothers (either in their third trimester or currently breastfeeding infants) who are open to using formula, as well as prenatal and neonatal heath care providers. The survey used an adaptive conjoint exercise to first determine the best of the insights, then the best of the benefits, and then the best of the reasons to buy. From there, we evaluated these optimized concepts on purchase interest and a number of other key measures.


Four weeks from the research kickoff, we had a full concept evaluated relative to our client’s current messaging as well as its competitors’ messaging. The new concept performed much better than the original version, allowing our client to develop refined packaging and marketing materials. The company’s C-suite was very happy, and the product launched on schedule. To date, the product is performing better than forecasted. And, as an interesting postscript, we are now helping the client assess other low-performing product lines using this same methodology.

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