#FuseDesign live: Lost in the Supermarket

The afternoon sessions in our Proof: Insights, Trends & Innovation symposium kicked off with two presentations that focused on reconciling two seemingly conflicting things.

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First, "Out of the Zoo, Into the Jungle: A discussion about reaching consumers on their turf" with Bill Less, Senior Design Manager, FRITO-LAY and Ivana Nikolic, Creative Director, DUPUIS expanded on last year's discussion on the use of focus groups for design research.

Ivana Nikolic started the session off with a tour of the modern supermarket, and the rather terrifyingly overwhelming amount of brands that are competing for consumer attention in that space. Obviously each brand would be seeking a way to stand out from the crowd, but how to discover what would speak best to your audience? Exploring this, Dupuis and Frito Lay partnered on a project to bring the Ruffles brand to the "bro" audience.

The team at Ruffles wanted to grow their brand with a demographic that wouldn't respond in a focus group situation, but needed insight in order to discover new opportunities. The answer? Finding a way to interact with and learn from these customers in the "bro-ments" they were already participating in (the bar or the pre-game party for example). Only then were they able to reconcile the "two faced" nature of the "bro."


Next, we were treated to "Starbucks: Nurturing and Inspiring the Coffee Buyer" with Tom Barr, VP Global Coffee, STARBUCKS and Tess Wicksteed, Strategy Director, PEARLFISHER

Starbucks was also facing a challenge reaching consumers in the grocery aisle. The Coffee section was divided between "The expert & the approachable," which is to say coffee that focuses strongly on the origin of the beans, the quality of the product or growing environment vs. coffee of more dubious or unknown origins that focuses on the after brewing flavor.

Pearlfisher also saw other inherent contradictions in the nature of coffee, such as:
Nature & Nurture
Comfort & Stimulation
Domestic & Exotic
Adventure & Habit
Drinkers & Connoisseurs

Building on these themes came the new package designs for blonde, medium & dark roast. The simple classification spoke to "approachable" needs, while the Starbucks "expert" level quality still remained and was echoed in copy on the back or sides of the package.

The result? In research, 70% of respondents said the new packaging made it easier to find the coffee they like.

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