Consumers Like New Products But Not New Brands Credit: Detergent bottles image via Shutterstock

Are you a little hesitant when it comes to trying new products? If so, you’re not alone. A new study shows that while folks around the world get excited about fresh products, they’re much more likely to buy something new or different when it’s marketed by a brand the customer already knows and trusts.

The study by Nielsen found that 60 percent of global consumers with Internet access prefer to buy new products from a familiar brand rather than switch to a new brand altogether.

“Innovating on established brands that are already trusted by consumers can be a powerful strategy,” said Rob Wengel, senior vice president of Nielsen Innovation Analytics. “Companies spend millions of dollars on new-product innovation, yet two out of every three new products will not be on the market within three years.”

Half of the respondents to the 58-country survey said they are willing to consider buying new products, with consumers in North America, the Middle East, and Africa being the most likely to try something new. But despite this general enthusiasm over fresh products, two-thirds of respondents said they’d choose to wait until a new product has proven itself before buying it.

“Consumers are enthusiastic about adopting new-product innovations, but somewhat apprehensive about embracing new brands,” said Wengel. “In order for consumers to adopt new brands, marketers need to launch very strong awareness campaigns, supported by a positive product experience.”

Wengel emphasized the need for companies to create a positive experience with new products by uncovering what consumers really need and delivering it to them clearly and effectively. He also stressed the importance of word-of-mouth endorsements, which he explained can make or break a new product’s success on the market.

Over 75 percent of global respondents named word-of-mouth advice from family and friends as the most persuasive source of new-product information. Meanwhile, 67 percent cited Internet searches as their primary source in deciding whether or not to try a new purchase. Fifty-nine percent of those surveyed cited television advertising as their main source of information about new products.

“There is no one-size-fits-all approach to successfully developing and marketing a compelling new product,” said Wengel. “However, ensuring consumers are aware of the product and can find it on store shelves is just as critical as coming up with that winning new product idea.”

Marketers and manufacturers should also take note of their consumers’ financial realities and personal preferences, the survey showed. Forty-five percent of global respondents reported that they are less likely to try new products in the face of challenging economic conditions. And 40 percent of the surveyed consumers reported that they are partial to local options, with North Americans most in favor of buying local.

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