Simulated Test Marketing
Consumers in an MSI Simulated Test Market (STM) test become aware of a new brand or line extension in a way more natural to each individual consumer. In a typical concept/product test, all respondents are made aware of the new rand after viewing advertising in some form – most likely a concept board – before indicating their interest in buying it. In an MSI test, respondents are assigned to one of a number of “awareness tracks” before being exposed to the product at the shelf.
Influences on consumer buying decisions have shifted significantly from manufacturer sources (mainly television advertising) to Retail POS sources. The MSI system takes this shift into account, allowing a consumer to become aware of the new entry as she naturally would in the real world. This leads to an accurate trial/purchasing rate needed for cell-to-cell comparisons and sales forecasting. The system allows the marketer to better plan and revise the multi-faceted pieces of the marketing plan.