A rigorous methodology as the basis of a unique mix

Future Concept Lab undertakes qualitative and quantitative research all across Europe, US, South America and Asia (in particular Japan, China and South Korea) managing and coordinating all the steps of the research project, from recruiting to the final presentation.

Our expertise is to combine data gathered in the field with a wide patrimony of consumer knowledge developed through 25 years of experience of trend research worldwide.

With internal interviewing and monitoring facilities (2 focus groups rooms, clients’ viewing room, audio and video recording with full transcript, catering and simultaneous translation on request), we undertake cross sector research with a particular experience in the areas of cosmetics, healthcare, food &beverage, media/editorial, consumer technology, domesticity (MDA), Retail, footwear and accessories, gold and jewelry, tourism.

Future Concept Lab conducts the following kind of researches:

  • Creative Focus-groups: usually involve 8 to 10 respondents carefully selected by a process that we personally follow step by step. Senior multi-lingual moderators conduct the group discussion through projection work, stimulating interaction on brand associations and inter-sector comparisons. Creative stimuli (visuals, prototypes, shelf reconstruction) are the result of a careful examination of consumer knowledge in the marker sector and shared with our Client throughout.
  • Product /Communication Test: conduction of focus groups or interviews aimed to test products or advertising campaigns exploring what details make the difference for consumers and/or how messages impact the collective imagery.
  • Delphi Research: involves the recruitment of ‘experts’, people who are highly influential in the market sector and/or have gained a deep knowledge on a specific product or a brand. Future Concept Lab owns an extensive experience in recruiting the voice of professional, working with product and store designers, architects, retailers and so forth.
  • Mini-Groups: formed by max 4/5 people, they allow to gain a deeper understanding of inner motivations. With respect to the aim of the research, mini-groups can be formed by ‘professionals’, ‘experts’ (which are part of our business international network) and ordinary consumers.
  • In-depth Interviews: our team is formed by anthropologists, psychologists, semiologists and people who have matured a strong experience on how to deal with cultural diversity. Interviews with consumers are structured in order to let respondents freely express themselves and are aimed to gather the key drivers to their decision-making.
  • Ethnography: involves ‘staying’ with people for some time, which can be a week (part of the week/day) in their homes, a day out shopping together or a visit to favourite stores. The time spent with consumers can be consecutive (few days together) or consistent on a regular basis (at a certain time for few days). Future Concept Lab has gained a wide experience of ethnographic research conducting in-home observation through diaries mixed with direct observation and in-depth interviews. So, at the end of an Ethnographic section, we are able to ‘map’ consumer’ behaviour within a grid of Values and preferences.

Thanks to the alliance with other institutes/facilities through different countries, Future Concept Lab directly manages all steps of the research and fieldwork (also following the recruitment in all its phases) with a guarantee that a senior member of our team is always in charge of the field.

We guarantee high quality standards in the 5 most important phases of a qualitative research design, from posing the right question to how to present data in a focused and engaging manner.

  • Posing the right question. Good qualitative research requires a neat project design, while at the same time it should allow space for ‘unexpected’ observations that can be just as precious.
  • Recruiting: The second and most delicate phase is recruiting the right respondents. We personally follow all the recruiting phases (also when we work in alliance with other research network and/or other external facilities), from the design of filter questionnaires to a final test to select the most suitable people.
  • Moderating/Interviewing: Discussion guides and stimuli are designed internally. Moderators and interviewers are multi-lingual and capable to operate through different cultural variables. As they are also in charge of the whole project, they can add the value of their own intuition never losing the focus of the final objectives. Simultaneous translation is also available on request.
  • Analysis: Our team is responsible for an internal analysis. We do not employ a standard formula for both project design an analysis, so each project is unique to us. With respect to the Client’s need, the analysis can go much further the research results, providing insights on design products and strategies in the areas of Retail and Communication.
  • Presentation: designed by our internal web designer and fully interactive, our presentations are detailed response to the projects questions with a strategic section rich of insights, that is a mix between empirical data and our yearly trends research analysis.

On the quantitative side, the activities related to the ad hoc research allow the testing of certain hypothesis and a more focused application of the strategy to be followed, both by the Client and the Institute.

Thanks to a wide research experience regarding international coordination, the Institute can guarantee a global and complete project: the in-house staff can follow and have the direct supervision of all the stages of the project, including the collaboration with various local research centers in different countries. In this area, some of the main activities offered by Future Concept Lab are:

  • Quantitative research
  • Telephone Surveys
  • Face-to-face research

Future Concept Lab is original and specific also in the area of ad hoc research, since it has the ability to integrate the quali-quantitative research regarding the consumer with the desk research that can include the study of semiotics, anthropology and sociology. The methodologies and the array of possibilities regarding the ad hoc research activity, can be used as single products but can at the same time bring significant results when combined with the socio-cultural research through the MindStyles Program, Genius Loci Program, Street Signals Program, Generational TargetsHappiness Program, studies that have demonstrated their importance in the last years.