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Learn how Sakura of America uses SurveyMonkey to test concepts, optimize pricing, and understand its target market.

Globe next to Sakura logo and screenshot of SurveyMonkey Audience Panel demographic selection

Hayward, CA


Consumer packaged goods

Market research

Concept testing

For more than 100 years, Sakura has helped unlock creative potential with quality art products and writing instruments—including Gelly Roll, the original gel pen. When its North American affiliate wanted to finetune its product development and understand consumer preferences, SurveyMonkey helped Sakura get its market research down to a fine art.

As any global brand knows, consumer preferences aren’t the same around the world. Much of Sakura’s research and development takes place in its home country of Japan—but Sakura of America needed consumer insights on the unique and rapidly evolving North American market in order to hit its aggressive targets for growth. Casey Singh, senior marketing manager of innovation and consumer insights, knew that SurveyMonkey could deliver the data that her team needed to advance product development and marketing strategies.

Headshot of Casey Singh and Sakura logo

Casey Singh
Senior Marketing Manager of Innovation and Consumer Insights 

Singh began with concept testing and, thanks to SurveyMonkey Audience, gathered target market feedback in record-breaking time. Next, she used SurveyMonkey to get a deeper understanding of that customer base. Sakura built its brand around artists, but was looking to increase its presence in the more mainstream big box retail space. Singh’s research uncovered that many consumers view pens strictly as writing tools and aren’t necessarily pursuing artistic projects—an insight that directly influenced Sakura’s retail strategy. 

Singh and her team even used SurveyMonkey to test price points for new products. This helped them not only optimize pricing, but also reimagine R&D initiatives. Insights on consumers’ willingness to pay, for example, helped inform product development for Sakura’s new UV glowing gel ink.

Globe next to charts and graphs

Casey Singh
Senior Marketing Manager of Innovation and Consumer Insights
Sakura of America

Making consumer-centric decisions is now a lot easier for the team at Sakura of America, as well as the larger organization as a whole. In one case, Singh had a gut feeling that US consumers would consider a $100 pen too expensive—and was able to back it up with definitive data. Plus, having objective data has allowed Sakura of America to measure performance targets more effectively. “No matter what stage your company is in, there is value that this platform can add,” Singh said. “If you care about the consumer as your North Star, SurveyMonkey will only yield positive things.

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