Case Study: Product Evaluation

Fast Research Action Boosts Holiday Sales of Chocolate-Covered Potato Chips

Client:

A multinational food and beverage corporation.

Objective:

  • Obtain insights into why a new holiday specialty potato chip product was failing to meet sales expectations; use those insights to inform fast corrective actions to raise sales for the remainder of the season.

Solution:

  • Use real-time Mobile GeoValidation® to locate and verify 400 natural snack shoppers who had entered stores selling the underperforming snack.
  • Guide qualified shoppers to view the product on shelves and take an immediate, in-store survey.
  • Follow up with an in-home user survey of initial respondents who had bought the snack chips without further prompting.

Project Details:

  • Part 1: Qualifying snack-intenders were prompted to examine the snack food on-shelf, and use their phones’ audio, video and photo capture features to record their reactions and impressions about its packaging and placement – was the product easy to find? Did it stand out from other nearby products? Did it look appealing? Was the price fair? Were they now interested in buying it?
  • Part 2: The 400 snack shoppers were GeoLocated again as they left the store, and received immediate push notifications of another survey opportunity. Those who had bought the client’s snack chips qualified for the follow-up; they were prompted to take another survey in real time while eating the chips. About 100 buyers qualified for the second phase, and 90% of them completed it.

Results:

  • First phase data indicated that the specialty snacks, which had been in the chips aisle, should be reclassified and placed in the seasonal snacks and candy aisle.
  • Data also revealed that its bulky packaging didn’t adequately distinguish this product from competing ones.
  • The client consequently shifted the product’s placement and changed the packaging to give it a more “premium” look.
  • The project’s turnaround time was less than two weeks, allowing these changes to be made in time to recoup some of the lost sales before the end of the holiday season.
  • Phase two data concerning consumer satisfaction and intent to buy again gave the client a basis for further discussion about whether and how to market the product in future holiday seasons.