Shelf Score – August 2014 – Beverages

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August’s Shelf-Score takes a dive into the non-alcoholic beverage world. Liquids are big business. One recent report suggests that the average American worker spends over $1100 each year just on coffee. Innovation has never been more important in the beverage industry. Beverage Industry, a leading data publication, suggests that in 2013 total sales of beverages declined in some categories including carbonated drinks and dairy beverages. Health concerns about sweeteners and sugar consumption, environmental concerns, and limited disposable income are all having an effect. As a result, companies are pushing harder than ever to find enticing flavors, interesting partnerships, and value-adds while developing drink category lines. Whether you are marketing protein water, are looking for the latest hot flavor trends to hit the market, or want to diversify your beverage product line, this month’s Shelf Score lineup has insights for you.

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10 Tips for Conducting Ethical Mobile Market Research

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Conducting mobile market research ethically protects your company and positions you as a trustworthy brand.
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Mobile technology has made it convenient for business owners to gather real-time responses to mobile surveys and other market research campaigns. But advances in technology have forced market researchers to take a hard look at ethical and legal considerations. For companies conducting independent market research, it’s important to understand respondent rights and privacy issues when developing campaigns. With a bit of planning, it’s easy to ensure that you’re acting in accordance with market research best practices and taking actions that reinforce customers’ trust in your brand. Continue reading

Can CPG Companies Get Millennials to Eat Cereal Again?


What does the future of the cereal category look like?
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There was a time when cold cereal was the top breakfast trend in the U.S. Weekly trips to the grocery store simply weren’t complete without a couple large boxes of popular breakfast cereal. Every sitcom and morning show assumed that Americans were diving into this “healthy” breakfast. But over the past few years, cereal consumption in the United States has decreased considerably. According to the Specialty Foods Association, the category has declined since 2009. Large companies like Kellogg and General Mills have experienced drops in brands that were once kitchen staples. Overall, sales of cold cereal products have decreased by 7% in just four years. Why have sales suddenly gone cold? Here are a few reasons behind the shift, and some important takeaways for businesses. Continue reading

Making the Most of Growth Opportunities: Building Links Between Market Research and Action

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Market research helps your business strategy move into action, like training data for an athlete.
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Productivity gurus often like to point out that research isn’t action. Entrepreneurs and brand managers can become paralyzed reading industry reports, gathering customer data, and taking a deep dive into the literature on the best practices of everything from product development to conversion testing. But it’s important to understand that while some forms of research (e.g. endless reading) can ultimately amount to procrastination, a well-formed market research agenda is the heart of an actionable strategy. Understanding the connection between good research and taking action can help you determine the information needed to set your business in motion. Here’s a closer look at how companies are forming research plans that spur their teams to take massive action on business objectives. Continue reading

Millennials vs. Baby Boomers: What Do Their Buying and Eating Habits Tell Us About Their Generation?

Organic foods

The data shows a surprising difference in purchasing focuses between millennials and baby boomers. Here’s what you need to know.
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We’ve explored the spending behaviors of millennials and baby boomers in past posts, including some of the unique challenges of effectively marketing to each of these groups. These key customer segments represent close to 60% of the total U.S. population, making their purchasing power undeniable for most mainstream brands. While recent studies show that the general spending behaviors of millennials and baby boomers are quite similar, it’s important for consumer packaged goods (CPG) brands to take their research a step further. Taking a closer look at which products these important customer segments are buying and why can inform your own marketing and product development efforts. This data is also critical to helping your marketing team effectively reach more customers. Here’s a closer look at what millennials and baby boomers are buying, and what it tells us about their generation. Continue reading

Tying Market Research and Analytics Together: Building a Solid Picture of Your Buying Funnel

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Is your market research integrated with the rest of your data collection efforts?
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Companies often develop a market research agenda that focuses on a single initiative. They’re working to answer a specific question, such as how their customer service is performing, whether or not a particular product will thrive in the market, or whether a recent event or marketing campaign hit its mark. But the firms that truly flourish in today’s complex business environment are integrating their survey market research and concept testing with other data points. We have never before had the opportunity to collect vast amounts of data easily and inexpensively. When market research is paired with a company’s other data-gathering tools, the insights can have staggering implications for how they do business. Here’s what you need to know to map your market research to your existing data resources.

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Coconut Water: A Deeper Look at the Niche Product’s Exponential Rise to Popularity

Coconut water

Coconut water has recently seen a huge surge in popularity.
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Coconut water has been a staple in tropical countries for centuries. The unique beverage, which is not to be confused with coconut milk, is typically served fresh from young, green coconuts in places like Brazil, the Pacific Islands, and the Caribbean. It is a popular drink choice among local residents and tourists alike. But in recent years, the niche product has been catching on in the United States. Here’s how coconut water made its way from the tropics to the U.S. market and some important takeaways for businesses. Continue reading

BelVita: How a Biscuit Took Breakfast by Storm

BelVita biscuits

BelVita biscuits have been a breakfast game-changer.
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When you think of breakfast, a few different types of food probably come into mind. You may think of popular cereals, bacon and eggs, or yogurt and fruit. Traditional breakfast foods have been dietary staples in United States households for decades. No weekly shopping list is complete without them. But in 2012, a new biscuit hit the U.S. market and completely revolutionized breakfast as we knew it. Here’s how BelVita breakfast biscuits took the market by storm, and here are some important takeaways for your business. Continue reading

Almond Milk: A New Take on a Classic Beverage


Almond milk has been an increasingly popular alternative to dairy in recent years.
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Just a few years ago, the dairy section at your local grocer contained only a few variations of one product: cow’s milk. Consumers could choose from whole, 2%, 1% and skim versions of the popular beverage. Today, a trip down the dairy aisle looks slightly different. Almond milk– a formerly niche product– has taken over a considerable amount of shelf space and continues to gain popularity in the US. In short, American consumers are quite simply going nuts over almond milk. The dairy milk alternative, which was relatively unknown in the United States until fairly recently, has become a staple product in many households around the country. Here’s a deeper look at the history of almond milk and some insight into its popularity. Continue reading

How to Avoid a Mobile App Mishap

Mobile apps

Can a mobile app mishap hurt your business?
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The mobile app market is big business. In 2013, there were over 1 million apps available for download and the estimated value of the industry topped $25 billion. By 2017, the total value is expected to increase to a whopping $64 billion. New applications are being introduced to the market at every moment. But as with anything else in the digital world, some mobile apps are much more successful and targeted to their users than others. If you’ve been contemplating developing a branded mobile application for your business, here are a few tips that can help you avoid a mobile app mishap. Continue reading