Hartosh Singh Bal in Open:
The world’s top manufacturer of flavoured nacho chips was planning an overhaul of its top brand. The company had noted that the flavouring tended to come off as a sticky paste on the hands of consumers. This, the company believed, could easily be avoided by a new flavouring that would taste the same but would not coat the fingers. Shortly before making the change, the company turned to the emerging field of neuromarketing to test the product one last time. The results were unexpected: consumers experienced two pleasure peaks while consuming the chips. The first as soon as they crunched on the nachos, the second when they licked the flavouring off their fingers. The revamp, unsurprisingly, was promptly shelved.
The founder of NeuroFocus, the world’s biggest neuromarketing firm, is AK Pradeep, a PhD in engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.