Big Idea Group Asks Moms to Help Redesign Dinner

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Major food company utilizes online community of moms to find hot areas for new product development. Innovation agent seeks diverse range of mothers to take part in the community.

Nearly 300 moms will be setting an extra plate at the dinner table for a new virtual guest: Big Idea Group (BIG). The innovation agency is forming an online group of moms to find out what's for dinner--and the issues involved in putting dinner on the table. The goal is to help BIG's client, one of the world's largest food companies, to develop new products that truly meet consumers' needs.

BIG will be joining 300 moms each week in the private online Mealtime Insights Innovation Club. Club members will complete activities and participate in forums designed to help reveal priorities, unmet needs and areas of dissatisfaction with current products. In return for their insights, members have chances to win weekly merchandise and cash prizes, as well as a monthly grand prize of $500.

While online communities and focus groups have been tapped before, BIG's use of such a group to identify innovation opportunities is unique. As Mike Collins, BIG's CEO says, "The best way to create products that consumers really need is to understand what they're experiencing and what's good and bad about that. Consumers may not always have a fully formed idea about what products they're looking for. However, they almost always have opinions on what's hard about a task and where current products fall short."

Collins notes that BIG's Clubs are often oversubscribed by eager members. "Yes, they're interested in the prizes," he says. "But we've found that, just as importantly, Club members like being asked for their opinions and knowing that they're contributing to new product development."

Recruiting for the Mealtime Insights Innovation Club begins this week. BIG is seeking moms from a variety of racial, economic and geographic backgrounds. They will join with other members for 10-15 minutes of activities each week, including discussions, brainstorming sessions, product reviews, surveys, and more. Club registration is accessible at

About Big Idea Group
Big Idea Group (BIG) partners with corporations to help them discover the next "big idea." Employing a unique, powerful business model, BIG works with consumer product companies such as Thomson, Kraft, eToys, Staples, Sunbeam, and Fortune Brands to find and develop innovations. BIG helps companies unearth fertile areas for development through community-driven Innovation Clubs. Once an opportunity has been identified, BIG puts the call to its extensive inventor network, soliciting new product and service concepts in highly targeted Idea Hunts. The best ideas from inventors are then developed and licensed to clients. Currently, BIG has a portfolio of 60 products either in the market or under development. BIG was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Lila Kahn
Big Idea Group
175 Canal St, 5B
Manchester, NH 03101
(603) 661-9498


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