Recently, Testpoint selected 50 women to evaluate the prototype of a new hair straightener, comparing it with the similar products of three other important companies already on the market.

A new hair straightener: how can you assess how much it is appreciated?

Today we want to reveal the “behind the scenes” of the launch of a new hair straightener, an essential accessory for those who want to have top hair, with a perfect styling in a little time.

It is not easy, for those who are not experts, to imagine everything that is behind the launch of a new product. Nothing is left to chance, every aspect must be carefully evaluated because these are economically significant investments and a company cannot afford to make mistakes.

It will be necessary to evaluate not only the performance and the technical aspects (materials used, power supply technology, heat distribution, temperature regulation etc.) but also to take into account the aesthetic aspect of the product to understand what impact this factor may have on the intentions to buy of potential consumers.

How to get all the necessary information? Simple: consumers must be listened to: this is why market research exists!

Personal interviews

Testpoint has recently conducted Central Location personal interviews (i.e. in a specific facility called central location) with 50 women, regular users of hair straighteners. The interviews were carried out over two days.

The first step was to recruit respondents for the test: they had to be ladies of different age groups, but all of them were regular users of high-performing hair straighteners, therefore belonging to a category of high-end, fairly expensive products.

The ladies were made to sit in a room where, on a table, the prototype of a new hair straightener was displayed along with three other products of well-known brands. Each respondent was required to give their evaluations by expressing the rating referred to different aspects. Each lady interviewed had to look, touch, evaluate the perceived aesthetics and functionality of the product. Interviews were audio recorded whereas an interviewer wrote down the rates expressed by each participant.

The ladies could see the brands of the products (it was not a blind test, in which the respondent is not aware of the brand): on the contrary, the purpose was to know exactly which brand was considered most reliable. However, the participants did not know – among the four models – which the prototype was.

How the interview was carried out

Let’s ask one of the participants to tell us about her experience. This is Lucilla, 35 y.o., from Rome, employed in a large company:

“It is very important for me to always be neat, especially at work and I pay particular attention to my hair that must always be perfect. The hair straightener is an indispensable accessory that allows me to have always tidy hair in a few minutes. I have used several models of hair straightener in my life, of different brands and with different performances so I think I have been a good judge for this market research.

I was invited to go to a facility where market research is carried out and, in a large room set up with a table in the center, I was shown four hair straighteners of different brands, all very well known. The interviewer asked me to look at them, touch them, evaluate the handling, rating them from 1 to 5.

It was not a matter of evaluating the performance of the hair straighteners and their functionality but only of expressing a judgment, so to speak, about how they look.

Then I was asked which model I liked most overall by ranking hair straighteners in order of preference. In the end, for one of the models I was shown some colour variations: it was certainly very innovative and captivating colours, from yellow, to green, to fuchsia, and I was asked if the colour could to some extent affect my intention to buy.

The interview lasted about ten minutes or so and I have to say it was a fun experience that I would gladly do again.”