Activate It

Activate It helps you identify your late-stage concepts with the highest activation potential — and learn how to make them even better. Use Activate It to launch new products that grow your brand with the freshest thinking in innovation. Available for Consumer goods (Fast moving, Slow moving, and Services) and Restaurants.

Testing Process

  • Monadic concept test to understand the growth potential of late concepts
  • Use KPIs to understand concept performance — including concept classification based on Trial and Breakthrough Potential.
  • Test up to 5 concepts with a sample size of 300 broad category users. This will unlock a broad and targeted sample to assess the overall opportunity (according to brand growth principles).
  • Real world relevance, with features such as competitive context and progressive exposure.
  • Analysis can be done via side-by-side testing or using robust benchmarking analysis
  • Includes deep dive into purchase behaviors, actionable attributes help identify opportunities for concept improvement to increase trial.


Making Decisions with Activate It


Stimuli Guidelines

In Activate It, concept should have 4 key elements:

  1. A product / pack image (photo or digitally rendered) which looks/feels like something consumers would see in-market.
  2. A brand name and logo, which are an important context that influences decision making. 
  3. Bite-sized description, reflective of how people consume information and is more engaging than traditional long-form concepts. Focus on what’s important and describe in a conversational manner. Include a benefit statement and emotional and rational justification.
  4. Product specifications. Information about flavors or varieties (if not already specified in the description), sizes/servings (including weight or volume), where the it can be purchased, and price.

Price exposure is introduced later in the survey and  it shouldn’t be included as part of the stimuli.

A full explanation of all stimuli and inputs can be found here.

Questionnaire flow:

Late-stage concept testing can look very different from one industry to another. For that reason, your Activate It questionnaire will depend on your vertical.

Currently we have two Activate It flavors: one for Consumer goods companies and another one for Restaurants.

However, both have 5 key moments in common:

  1. Category consumption profiling 
  2. Pre-exposure brand choice exercise
  3. Stimuli exposure
  4. Concept purchase behavior (including Trial Potential and Purchase Uplift)
  5. Concept rating and diagnostics (including Breakthrough Potential, Believability, Pricing Diagnostic, Heatmaps, and more)

If you want to know more about the questionnaire, please reach out to your Zappi Representative.

Making Decisions with Activate It

Key Measures

  • Trial
  • Breakthrough
  • Incremental growth evaluation
  • Potential purchase behavior
  • Concept diagnostics

Utilizing a relevant benchmark

Choose from three benchmarking approaches to assess your concept’s ability to outpace the competition.

  • Normative benchmarks - category and country norms provide a broad view of how consumers rate your concepts in relation to a wide range of CPG products; a minimum of 20 concepts is required for a normative benchmark.

  • User defined (tagged) benchmarks - a closely related group of concepts provide a precise view of how consumers rate your concepts in relation to close-in competitors and/or other products in your portfolio; a minimum of 5 concepts is recommended for a user defined benchmark. 

  • Direct benchmarks -  when two or more concepts are tested together, statistical significance testing can be used to directly compare performance metrics between or across concepts.

Understanding the Concept Classification Chart

Strong potential with Early Adopters: Concepts listed as having "Strong Potential with Early Adopters" resonate with consumers that exhibit behaviors linked with early adoption. These concepts are listed by their Total Audience classification below.Early Adopters are consumers who try a new product or service when it first becomes available and in a shorter period of time than the average person. By understanding whether a new idea is appealing to Early Adopters, you can potentially identify breakthrough innovation, and no longer risk leaving strong ideas on the cutting room floor.

All concepts are classified into five "buckets," based on their performance across two key measures, Trial Potential and Breakthrough Potential:

  • Scale and sustain
    These concepts have strong potential for scale amongst category consumers and should be prioritized. Develop full articulation and research to understand final commercial viability.

    If concepts are Scale and sustain with strong potential with Early Adopters, they should be prioritized and exploited quickly before the opportunity to be a pioneer with this concept is lost.
  • Short term trial
    These concepts have high competitive trial potential but aren't considered innovative enough in a category context to maintain excitement for long. Develop further and understand the short-term revenue opportunities where trial is needed but longer term potential is not essential.

    If concepts are Short term trial with strong potential with Early Adopters, then Early Adopters see these concepts as being more breakthrough than category consumers. Develop further, considering how to highlight the breakthrough potential with a wider audience.

  • Seed and grow
    These concepts have breakthrough potential but more modest trial. Consider moving forwards with slower/alternative approaches to growth such as different routes to market, limited distribution or a test-and-learn approach.

    If concepts are Seed and grow with strong potential with Early Adopters, they have had their strong breakthrough potential confirmed by Early Adopters. Capitalize on the opportunity swiftly at smaller scale through alternative routes to market, limited distribution or a test-and-learn approach.

  • Emergent
    These concepts have a strong ability to drive distinction and advantage perceptions but low trial potential, suggesting a trend for breakthrough innovation. Consider monitoring and re-assess in the near future.

    If concepts are Emergent with strong potential with Early Adopters, they have on-trend potential amongst Early Adopters, suggesting a trend for breakthrough innovation. Consider developing at smaller scale to explore the opportunity.

  • Deprioritize
    These concepts have moderate-to-low breakthrough and trial potential amongst total audience category consumers. Either deprioritize, investigate potential amongst Audience Profiles or analyze, rework and retest.

    If concepts are Deprioritize with strong potential with Early Adopters, then consider exploring further potential amongst Early Adopters to confirm trend and progress with a "seed and grow" perspective if confirmed.

More details on how the quadrant chart works here.

Understanding your Concept Performance Indicators

Concept Performance Indicator chart shown with a tabular chart and "Top 1 Box" calculations

Each of these measures corresponds to a different question in the survey (summarized below). Use the configuration sidebar on the chart page to configure the scale measure display, profile/subgroup, and chart display type.

  • Purchase Likelihood: likely would you be to buy [product] if it were available at a reasonable price?
  • Distinctiveness: similar or different is [product]?
  • Advantage: ...agree or disagree with the following statement: [product] is better than other products currently available
  • Meets Needs: How well do you think [product] delivers the main things you need from [category]?
  • Believability - Category: Thinking about the statements made about [product], how much do you believe these could be true for [category] in general?

Understanding potential with Profiles

You can use Profiles to define and create norms for your subgroups, then get a clear read on concept potential among them in your reports.

  • You will be able to customize charts in your report by selecting the desired audiences you want to explore. You will get by default a list of demographic profiles.
  • You can create new profiles based on any profiling/screener question used in the survey (i.e. brand buyers, shoppers for a specific retailer, heavy/lapsed buyers).
  • Norms will be available for any profile created (assuming at least 20 concepts available with a minimum base of n=30 per concept).
  • If your profile doesn’t exist, speak to your Customer Success rep to get it built.


Q: Does Activate It use weighting?

A: Yes. We weight and normalize respondent data before putting it into the databases to ensure (a) data is consistent, (b) results are balanced and (c) data is discriminating to ensure an accurate representation of consumer behavior.

Q: Does Activate It screen out non-buyers in my category?

A: No. While the survey automatically populates screening questions based on the category you select and so is consistent each time you test in the same category, we do not screen out non-buyers in these questions. We instead weight key measures in reporting according to the sample's representation. This has two key benefits: 1) without screening quotas upfront, we’re able to field your surveys more quickly and cost-effectively, and 2) not screening out non-buyers allows you to analyze the non-buyer respondents and seek out white space opportunities or ways to influence this group specifically.

For example, the respondent will be asked a usage question like this one for the ready-to-heat meals category:

If they select "Never," they will continue with the survey like other respondents. However, the platform then automatically weights your data when the report is populated, based on the makeup of usage in the sample, so that your decisions are made based on the respondents you care most about. That way, if you were curious as to how your concept tested with those who selected "Never," you could always filter based on this criteria. Those with high performance among non-users of the category may represent an opportunity to attract new users to the category.

Q: What's the difference between Activate It Consumer Goods and Activate It for Slow Moving Consumer Goods and Services?

Consumer Goods: This product is designed for faster moving products that are bought multiple times a year, and in many cases, even multiple times a week or month. These products have a very quick lifecycle - they get used and replaced often. Examples include:
  • Food
  • Beverages
  • Tobacco products
  • Health & Beauty products

Slow Moving Consumer Goods and Services: This product is designed for goods & services that have a longer use cycle. These products are typically only purchased annually or every several years, requiring a different set of questions to get at the purchase landscape. Examples include:

  • Technology
  • Telco
  • Household appliances

*Note: The current release does not yet have the Concept Classification Chart. The main reporting is done in a KPI scorecard at this time. We will be adding in the Concept Classification Chart once it's ready (updated Jan 12, 2023).

If you are looking for any additional information, please check out the links below:

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