How we co-developed a new energy drink with HEINEKEN

Testing bold ideas with a finish first approach.

Discover the challenge, story & result for Heineken.

From complete MVP to complete energy drink proposition.

By Annemarie Perquin

Strategic Advisor

Contact directly via mail, LinkedIn or Whatsapp

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What does it mean to start at the finish?

Speed & flexibility are key to success. And therefore, we believe your innovation process (& insight generation) should be as well. We will start creation from the start, and test bold ideas with consumers. Fail as fast as we can. 


Finish First is useful to:

Fast-track your time-to-market

It's all about testing and launching your MVPs at record speed. The faster you move, the faster you'll fail—and make the necessary adjustments for success.

Adopt a start-up mindset

Or, in short: a cross-departmental strategy, thorough research, and unparalleled adaptability.

Discover the truth about consumers

Don't expect consumers to behave precisely the way you'd predict. People are emotional creatures who feel their way through the market.

Fail fast and learn faster

Iterative learning will guide you towards better-informed decisions. Who fails faster, learns faster—and that'll supply you with the insights needed to improve. 

How we run innovations depends on you.

Finish First flips traditional ideation on its head. Instead of trying to understand the market and consumers, we focus on creating concepts from the very start, testing and reworking MVPs as soon as possible.

We fail fast. We learn faster. And we use real customer experiences to find the best solution to your problem. We connect with consumers through a multi sensory approach that engages their feelings, not their thoughts.

Innovation scope & creation

Ideation workshop(s) with R&D, Marketing and/ or Consumers Experts Influencers

Online Community

(Online) Focus groups & co-creation workshops

Concept test

Product trials

5 days – 5 senses Design Sprint

Pilot market or mass evaluation

Pilot Stores

Pilot e-commerce environment

Concept/MVP test & refinement


Wondering how to get started with a Finish First-approach?

In this Guidebook, you'll find more info and an example of the approach.



Having a completely iterative and multi-faceted approach, focused on the consumer, the category and product enabled us to move with pace and ensure we got in front of consumers much quicker than most global NPD.

CMI Global Heineken

Not sure if Finish First is the right approach for you or your organization? 

Book a 15-minute meeting with our expert Annemarie. She'll answer your most pressing questions and help set you up for success.

Annemarie Perquin

Strategic Advisor & Team Lead

Contact directly via mail, LinkedIn or Whatsapp

Annemarie P. (Strategic Advisor @ Haystack Consulting) created a new vision around our innovation process, "Finish First".

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