InstaSAM - Mobile ethnography, live and in real-time



A leading cosmetics company wanted to launch a new product line for men in the beard care category in order to meet a growing consumer trend with relevant products. They needed to better understand male beard care and beard grooming routines and related needs in depth as a springboard for product development.



SAM set up a two-step digital ethnography study with international scope with 20 consumers each in Brasil, Germany and China. The entire fieldwork was conducted in an agile and efficient way using our smartphone-based ethnography app InstaSAM.

In a first step of research, the consumers documented their beard care routines as well as related needs and pain points via photos and videos. Using diverse creative tasks and exercises, we also brainstormed potential innovative product ideas to address their unmet needs with the consumers.

After a first round of product development, SAM connected with the consumers again. They received two different prototypes, a beard softener and a beard oil, tested them in their homes and again documented their experiences with videos and photos.



With only 2x5 days of fieldwork and 20 consumers per market, we were able to provide our client with a rich and inspiring multimedia gallery showcasing beard care routines, needs and pain points to inspire product development. The prototypes developed by our client could then be re-checked in a real-life setting with the same set of consumers. This iterative approach delivered clear and hands-on recommendations for finetuning of the prototypes in a highly efficient way.