Case Study

McNeil Consumer Healthcare

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Transform the treatment experience so it doesn't add insult to injury.

Objective: Enhance the treatment experience for consumers who suffer from a common ailment.

Result: Key Learning about experiencing and treating ailments, and 9 new delivery and usage solutions that make treatment more pleasant.

Background: This project began with a client's vision. Dr. Steve Wiet is a Consumer Psychologist and retired Global Director of OTC Consumer Sciences at Johnson & Johnson Consumer Products—McNeil Consumer Healthcare. Prior to retirement, he was responsible for leading R&D activities that enhanced consumer understanding, translated consumer insights into new healthcare products, and optimized the aesthetic features of these products. He was a leader in developing and sustaining an innovative R&D culture responsible for driving the generation and commercialization of new healthcare solutions.

Dr. Wiet participated in a more than a dozen Ideas To Go projects—so his deep understanding of the creative process provided the spark for a great project: making the treatment of a common ailment more pleasant. And because Johnson & Johnson Consumer Healthcare knew they offered an experience, not just a product, Dr. Wiet envisioned an iterative project with ideas and feedback from creative and articulate consumers throughout the concept development process.

To make this vision a reality, Ideas To Go collaborated on a design that wove consumer input throughout the process:

  • Creative Consumers® associates who all treated the same condition prepared a homework assignment to get the ideation off to a strong start.
  • Their assignment revealed 4 Target Opportunity Areas for enhanced delivery and usage experiences.
  • The client team and Creative Consumers® associates worked together in small teams to design devices that met the needs and wishes of the end user.
  • Each device idea was sent to an online team of Creative Consumers® associates from across the country. These consumers, who also treated the ailment, gave a Forness® response for their favorite ideas—detailing what they liked about the idea, and suggestions for making it even better. These responses were returned to the development team to optimize their device.
  • 3 artists worked to sketch the devices, as directed by the small teams.
  • The client team used this consumer feedback to develop and optimize final concept outlines.

The clients walked away with a deeper understanding of their consumers’ needs—and illustrated, insight-grounded concepts for R&D—including detailed descriptions, key consumer benefits, notes on design options, and rationale for development.

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