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Groundbreaking Kline Research Program Delivers Crucial Consumer Insights in Personal Care Innovation

-- KlinePulse Leverages Emergent Consumer Research Methods; Quantified Qualitative Results Help Drive Critical R&D and Marketing Decisions --

LITTLE FALLS, NJ, January 13, 2010 –

Kline & Company, a worldwide consulting and research firm with a 50-year history of expertise in the consumer products industry, today announced the debut of KlinePulse, a groundbreaking new research initiative designed to gather authentic consumer insights to help companies make crucial decisions about research and marketing efforts.

The first edition of KlinePulse, Consumer Insights of Personal Care Innovation 2010, represents an exclusive look into the nuances of consumer perspectives on personal care innovation based on original consumer feedback to reveal complex underlying attitudes, behaviors, and experiences that drive purchasing decisions.

“KlinePulse provides a truly unique perspective by marrying cutting-edge primary consumer research with industry data to provide marketers with a much more thorough understanding of how consumers perceive innovation,” said Nancy Mills, industry manager for Kline’s consumer products practice.

Traditional consumer research often employs close-ended, multiple-choice surveys, interviews, or focus groups to solicit responses from consumers about historical behavior. The problem with these methodologies, Mills says, is that they rarely yield legitimately unbiased feedback. Survey questionnaires, by design, force respondents to choose from pre-determined selections, and focus group participants are easily influenced by the moderator and other participants in the group. In addition, the information gleaned from these methods is based on past behavior, which may have little bearing on future patterns.

KlinePulse uses open-ended, indirect questions and narrative gathering that enable respondents to deliver entirely unbiased, unprompted perspectives on their attitudes and thoughts. This raw, qualitative data is then quantified based on specific value metrics to help marketers identify the types of consumers and the contexts in which they are most highly engaged with certain brands and products.

By identifying patterns in the material, marketers can better detect consumer trends before they happen, to take advantage of opportunities and understand more about the value consumers place on innovation. With detailed context based on highly emotional experiences, marketers can formulate more targeted marketing messages that resonate with consumers and deploy tactics and strategies that reach engaged consumers where it can have the most impact.

“Innovation happens when you see things in new ways, from your consumers’ viewpoint, and that’s exactly what KlinePulse provides. An important key point of emergent research is that you can’t predict the results in advance. Marketers who have become comfortable with traditional research methods may not like what they hear,” Mills said. “But when you allow your audience to drive the conversation rather than forcing them down a pre-determined path, you are bound to be stimulated into innovative thinking.”

KlinePulse leverages the research methodologies and software of Cognitive Edge, an organization which applies a science-based approach to organizational decision making, drawing on anthropology, neuroscience, and complexity theory.

Charter subscribers to KlinePulse, Consumer Insights of Personal Care Innovation 2010 will be invited to help shape the research parameters. As an added dimension, KlinePulse will also integrate data gathered from online forums, social networking sites, and consumer review sites to help subscribers more accurately gauge the significance of disruptive customer feedback.

“Measuring social media has become a formidable challenge for marketers in every industry,” Mills said. “By correlating web-based feedback into the Pulse research, we can help personal care companies determine whether one customer’s rant represents an isolated incident or a trend that demands broad-based response.”

Kline will conduct a brief webinar on Tuesday, January 26 to introduce subscribers to KlinePulse, Consumer Insights of Personal Care Innovation. For more information and to register for the webinar, visit http://bit.ly/pls685.

About Kline
Kline is a worldwide consulting and research firm dedicated to providing the kind of insight and knowledge that helps companies find a clear path to success. The firm has served the management consulting and market research needs of organizations in the chemicals, materials, energy, life sciences, and consumer products industries for 50 years. For more information, visit www.KlineGroup.com.

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