Consumer Packaged Goods & Retail

Limelight Insights by Shugoll has helped some of the world’s biggest names in consumer products address challenges ranging from waning brand loyalty, to identifying new product opportunities.

Understanding the needs and wants of consumers is more important than ever. Good market research can provide valuable feedback and consumer insights that can help improve and shape product strategy. By understanding customer preferences, trends, market characteristics and retail interactions, market research can help clients pinpoint specific product attributes that are attractive or unattractive to consumers, identify an appropriate price point for a product or service, select appropriate product distribution channels, and determine the appropriate ways to communicate about a product or service with messages that will resonate with target audience members.

Our research studies for retail and consumer packaged goods-related clients include:

  • New product concept testing
  • Market segmentation
  • Pricing research
  • Brand awareness and loyalty
  • Product feature analysis
  • Advertising concept and message testing
  • Advertising campaign impact and tracking studies
  • Product and brand positioning
  • Customer use and attitudinal studies
  • Market feasibility and demand
  • Competitive analysis

Limelight Insights has extensive experience conducting research in virtually every sector in the retail and consumer packaged goods industries including:

Specific Retail Store Shoppers/Customers

  • One-time and repeat shoppers
  • Customers who shop with competitors
  • Customers who have never shopped with you/in your product category
  • Users of specific types of products/brands
  • Customers of specific store locations
  • Specific categories of shoppers (i.e., high-end shoppers, organic-only shoppers, bargain hunters)

Consumers (Special Segments)

  • Generational cohorts: Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X, Baby Boomer, and Silent Generation consumers
  • Consumers of different ethnic backgrounds (Black/African American, Hispanic/LatinX, Asian/Asian American)
  • Teens/pre-teens
  • Parents 
  • Children
  • Consumers with differentiating demographic, psychographic, or behavioral indicators or preferences


  • Retail store employees
  • Intermediate management (HR, IT managers, operations management, etc.)
  • High level executives/management (CEOs, CFOs, Presidents, Vice Presidents, etc.)

Case Study: Baby Formula Branding & Positioning

A popular baby formula brand contracted with Limelight Insights to assess how the brand could best communicate its value proposition to inform product design, to better understand their consumers’ and prospective consumers’ formula decision journey, to establish which product benefits/claims to highlight in order to best reach their intended audiences, and to identify potential opportunities for brand expansion.

In a series of focus groups, the Limelight Insights team asked customers and prospects to:

  • Discuss their formula decision-making process (i.e., when they began considering formula, brands they considered, formula features they looked for, key influencers in the decision-making process)
  • Identify key features of their perfect or ideal formula
  • Describe (unaided) what they knew about the formula brand (i.e., words they associate with the brand, how they learned about the brand, questions and concerns they had when first using the brand)
  • React to a product description of the brand (aided) and identify key product features and messaging that resonated (or did not resonate) with them
  • Identify top motivating and least motivating product attributes in the brand’s description
  • React to a list of potential product expansion opportunities for the formula brand

The results of the research helped the formula brand identify and segment their key target markets, tailor their communication to best reach these various groups, identify key moments of potential influence in their decision-making journey when the brand could authentically communicate with target consumers, and to inform product expansion.

A large part of our business is answering critical questions
and providing actionable insights that can inform a business’ or organization’s direction.

Here are some of the questions Limelight Insights has helped
consumer packaged goods and retail brand clients answer:

Can you help me identify and evaluate new product ideas?

Limelight Insights conducts brainstorming and ideation sessions to explore consumer needs and identify areas for new product development or product line extensions. Idea writing, sensory sorts, wishful thinking exercises, and the Delphi technique are just some of the tools we use in brainstorming sessions.

New product ideas that are raised in the ideation sessions can then be evaluated using quantitative research tools where interest in different product ideas is tested and demand for the new product concepts is estimated.

Prototypes of high-potential new products can be developed for testing in qualitative settings including focus groups and in-depth interviews. Consumer benefits for each potential new product can be identified through the use of needs laddering, target market profiles can be developed by segmenting your audience according to benefits sought, and product usage behavior can be gauged using situational associations.

Quantitative studies for new products can focus on name testing, taste testing, in-home placements, usage studies, and pricing-and-packaging tests.

Finally, Limelight Insights uses its proprietary process, Product Opportunity Forecaster, to identify which new product or service concepts are most viable in the marketplace by modeling expected market share and revenue streams. This information is used to confirm whether the product will meet consumer expectations and achieve market acceptance.

How do consumers make their buying decisions?

Consumer purchasing behavior is complex and impacted by a number of demographic, psychographic, and situational variables. After spending time with your target audience members, Limelight Insights can develop a consumer decision journey map that outlines how consumers in your product category, or your consumers specifically, make a product decision. This technique uses extensive probing that incorporates a variety of projective techniques to get at underlying attitudes and behaviors. Situational recreations and storytelling are some of the projective techniques used to help consumers walk us through their decision-making process.

A further analysis identifies different paths that consumers follow when deciding to purchase specific consumer products, and groups respondents with similar decision trees together. Results of this analysis enable Limelight Insights to identify the “points of influence” for each of our clients’ primary consumer segments. We identify at what point in the shopping process the decision to purchase a specific product or brand is made and what motivates the purchase at that time. Limelight Insights’ consumer decision journey maps have helped clients develop specific marketing strategies by consumer segments and determine the best time in the purchase process to direct marketing or advertising resources.

What is my most compelling advertising strategy?

What’s your key message? What is the one thing you want consumers to think, feel, or do as a result of exposure to your advertising campaign or from engaging with your brand or service? What compelling insight from your market research can be used to develop an effective message strategy that will influence consumers to do what you want them to do? All of these are challenging questions that Limelight Insights by Shugoll can help you answer. By spending time with your target audience members, testing product concepts or prototypes with them, or obtaining feedback on your creative, we can assist in developing a strategy that will aid you in effectively communicating with your target audience members.

How should we position our brand?

Limelight Insights helps consumer goods companies understand their current brand positioning (are you number 1? Number 2? A new competitor on the market? And what strategic defense should you adopt as a consequence?). Additionally, if necessary, we can provide direction to help clients reposition their brands. Quantitative studies are conducted to measure brand awareness, brand usage, brand image and brand loyalty. If a brand needs to be repositioned, qualitative research is first used to explore the existing image of the brand and to identify what customers are looking for in the ideal brand. Techniques such as metaphors, personification, and storytelling are just some of the tools used to explore brand image in a qualitative setting.

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