iTouch Jumbo, Large Soda and Magnum Condom. What Do They Have in Common? It Is All About Size.

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Size is always a big factor in product design and marketing. The iPad essential becomes an iTouch for the tallest man in the world. I always have a problem with oversized drinks in this part of the world, but I also have a problem with the undersized drinks in Europe and Japan. A cup of tea in London is really too small for me and I almost needed to order two. A cup of tea in New York is usually way too big and I have to pour away 30% of it right away.

Oversized cold beverage sales is maxing out at 32 oz., in the eyes of the marketers they generally views "bigger" as "better," field data telling us that gigunda 44 oz. size fountain beverages have very little appeal. Marketers love to sell large drinks because of economic reasons and they are mostly targeted to blue collar workers. Some locations push 20-oz. and 32 oz. fountain beverages and people really prefer 20 oz drinks. Big is not always better many people now realize, at least when it comes to soft drinks.

Small is an easy sell for cellphones or laptops, but not in the case of selling condoms. But small condoms are a marketing challenge, even though small size condom does fulfill a customer unmet needs, but you can’t really base your marketing around the product feature. I believe what they are selling fits the average man, but according to a medical journal, 45% of men reported that they had experienced an ill-fitting condom within the last three months. The misfits were significantly more likely to report breakage and slippage, along with difficulty reaching the goal. Not surprisingly, men with ill-fitting condoms were more likely to end up taking them off which becomes a massive product failure for the job a condom exists to fulfill. What good is a product when the user ended giving up on it.

If you hit the store, you will find many labeled as ‘large’ or ‘extra large’ even though they are just normal size. To be fair, collecting accurate market data is a problem too. LifeStyles has by far the most direct code, called "Snugger Fit." I think there is a lot they can learn from Starbucks. Call them ‘tall’ or ‘grande’ etc. And there is no indication of which product are ‘green’ or manufactured from ‘reused material’. Or throw in some new ideas of how you can use a condom and save the world. 

Even ignore the fit problem, duration is probably the biggest sexual anxiety of the average man, we can use some innovation in rethinking the product design and experience and even packaging and labeling. This is an ignored product category and seriously needing innovation.

And what about custom fit condom? Or even designers condom? There is no reason that you can custom order them with your preference of size, shape, color, material, favor, packaging and any other special features. What happens to the idea of mass customization? I have never consulted for this industry, maybe this is the big idea I have for them. We always start any project with field research. Who’s up for it?

Talking about product research and testing, a while back a condom manufacturer was looking for a few product testers. I am sure some of you will be interested in that job. I am not sure about the recruitment criteria or what special activities you need to perform. Sorry this job is for men only. For this job, they do have instruction for the ‘positions.’ The first box to be checked in the document to be filled after field test is ‘your positions’. You might think it is great job, but the pay sucks. The 200 selected product testers would only get a free pack of Durex condoms (cheap), plus a bonus prize of $425 for one lucky winner but not sure based on what to determine who the winner is. I’ll pass.

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