Home / Blog / 5 Strategies for Using Precision IHUTs to Unlock Authentic Consumer Behavior Insights

5 Strategies for Using Precision IHUTs to Unlock Authentic Consumer Behavior Insights

  • December 11, 2023
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In-home usage tests (IHUTs) give market researchers a window into their customers’ everyday lives. Unlike surveys and focus groups that ask participants to recall how they use products, IHUTs let consumers use products naturally in their own homes. Researchers can use IHUTs to test changes in product features, formulas, and messaging campaigns or to evaluate proof of concept before rolling a new product innovation out to the market. 

But until recently, IHUTs still relied on study participants to note when and how they used products and to accurately convey that information.  

Not anymore. Researchers can now bridge the say/do gap and unearth deeper consumer behavior insights with precision IHUTs that use modern sensor technology to passively collect precise, accurate usage data.  

These five tips will help you get the most from this powerful new technology.  

Plan Your IHUT Product Testing Approach 

Failing to plan, as the saying goes, is planning to fail. Consider these five tips when mapping out each precision IHUT.  

  1. Define your objective and your target audience. What specific aspect of your product do you want to test? Create a granular and detailed research plan so you’re not overwhelmed with meaningless data. Once you know your objective, choose an appropriate audience to test this aspect or feature.  
  2. Use technology to spot white-space opportunities. Overwhelmed by the prospect of sifting through a pile of data in search of gaps that might represent new white-space opportunities? Don’t be. Artificial intelligence (AI) can quickly analyze consumer usage data and pinpoint each minute variation from the usual pattern. 
  3. Pair precision IHUTs with a qualitative platform for follow-up questions. It’s always wise to gather both quantitative and qualitative data—and it’s easy to do with precision IHUTs. The same sensors that collect product usage data can also send notifications to product testers, prompting them to answer a few questions while they use the product.  
  4. Collect rich, vibrant participant feedback by using a video platform. Tap directly into the consumer experience by gathering video feedback rather than written text. With video, you’ll hear exactly what consumers like and dislike and why they feel that way. Plus, you can share those videos throughout the organization to inform product design, guide innovation efforts, and bring key stakeholders and organizational leaders on board.  
  5. Experiment! Precision IHUTs let you explore any aspect of your product, from its consistency and texture to its taste, scent, and color. But that’s not all. You can also use them to test different containers, packaging, instructions, labels, and marketing messages. Be creative and take full advantage of the power and flexibility of sensor-enabled precision usage testing 

Gather Meaningful Consumer Behavior Insights With Precision IHUTs 

Once you’ve defined your objectives and identified your audience, choose tools that will collect the data you need. Smart sensors free you from reliance on participant recall, offering features such as:  

  • Passive data collection that works around the clock so you never miss a data point;  
  • Accurate and precise measurement, down to the gram and the minute, so you know exactly how and when consumers use your products; and  
  • Cloud-connected data transfer so you can observe and act on insights in real time.  

Ready to use precision in-home usage tests (IHUTs) to discover authentic consumer behavior insights? QualSights has the tools you need. Our always-on, always-connected smart sensors passively collect precise, accurate product usage data 24/7. At the same time, our mobile qualitative insights platform collects in-depth consumer videos that let you explore the story inside the data and curate the most compelling narratives and findings into powerful presentations.  

To learn more, contact us to set up a demonstration. 

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