Take the quiz below to see if you can spot the difference between an insight and a "reverse benefit." Insights are broad truths about consumers' lives and/or behaviors. They don't have to directly relate to any product or service—though they can—and great insights are compelling, truthful and empathetic. BUT, it can be all too easy to fall into the reverse benefit trap: using words like "want" or "need" to state a benefit disguised as an insight.
The benefit is what the consumer gets, or how it changes their day at the functional or emotional level (ITG prefers emotional benefits). A great concept will consist of an Insight, setting the stage for the product, a singular Benefit, and a focused Product Description. While the benefit should relate to the insight and solve for any tension, you still need a uniquely separate insight.
Look through the consumer statements in the quiz below and see if you can distinguish between an insight—a broad truth—and a reverse benefit—a statement around what the consumer will get, hidden as an insight.
Tyler Thompson is a Creative Process Designer and Facilitator at Ideas To Go, an innovation agency that works with Fortune 500 companies in ideation and concept development to incorporate the voice of the consumer.