The Problem

A consumer technology company in the athletics space was ready to scale. As they worked to move into the youth sports market, they knew they had many potential customer groups they could target: coaches, parents, and student athletes. With limited budget at-hand, they needed a way to determine who among these three groups should be the design target.

The Approach

We developed a survey-based research study to understand how the three stakeholder groups mapped across unique behavioral, demographic, and psychographic dimensions to ultimately identify which group held the most ideal traits.

Concept Screening

As a one-of-a-kind sports improvement product, we knew it was key to assess if stakeholders found the concept not just interesting but also compelling and resonant. As a result, we started the survey by measuring each stakeholder’s concept interest, and what drove that interest.

Features & Values

All stakeholders were shown a robust set of feature and value statements to best assess how well the product’s benefits resonated with each group.


We included a series of binary questions to gauge short- and long-term sports goals and attitudes towards sports in general. The intent was to assess how active certain stakeholders were in sports, and how committed they were to athletic improvement.

Apples-To-Apples Comparisons

We made a deliberate effort to design the entire survey, and structure all of the questions, to be applicable to all three stakeholder groups. While this required additional effort, it was a key step to cleanly measure each dimension across each group.

The Results

Target Customer Alignment

By comparing and contrasting responses across all three stakeholders, we aligned our client around Parents as the core customer target. Seeing this segment’s concept appeal, participation in key customer journey stages, and interest in features and values offered our client peace of mind that this was the best design target.

Positioning & Messaging Framework

The inclusion of features, values, and psychographic inputs led us to isolate key reasons driving interest in the product as well as what users would strive to do with the product. This served as objective intel from which to build a positioning and messaging framework.

Go-To-Market Planning

The addition of questions to understand influencing channels and media consumed also helped build the foundations for a go-to-market and channel strategy plan.

Did You Know...

Products and services can often be used by multiple types of customers. But, resources and budgets often prevent organizations from targeting all of these individuals. By identifying a “design target,” which is an ideal customer profile among a larger market, companies can develop more focused marketing messaging and materials. It improves short-term acquisition while still having a halo affect in terms of reaching the market as a whole.


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