A proposal for improving the utilisation of test markets

Date of publication: June 15, 1969


Test markets have been strongly criticised, particularly because it is extremely difficult to project the results and obtain reliable estimates for the total market. This is especially the case in countries where markets vary considerably from region to region and where advertising media are not sufficiently flexible to be used on a local basis. In these conditions, test areas are considered as a crude instrument: - to get rough estimates of possible future sales volume; - to adjust particular aspects: e.g. price, package, size, etc. We can change this attitude if: - we look at test areas from a different point of view; - we use a suitable technical approach. Test areas can be considered as a method for checking a complete strategy. In fact the firm is interested in checking if a certain number of results can be achieved when a product is introduced into the market. These results have to be measured not only in sales volume but also in the number (or quality) of outlets; the segments of consumers; the penetration of communication; the image obtained; the market share achieved; and so on.

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