How to Spot an Aging Idealist

Diana (r) with her sister Patty, the Aging Idealist

This blog is the final in our series detailing each of six distinct meat consumer segments from our recent Meat Consumer Segmentation research.

My sister and I have always been very different. She likes the heat, I like the cold. She likes spicy foods, I like sweet foods. So after learning that I am a Wavering Budgeteer, I was curious to see what category she fell into.

Turns out my sister is an Aging Idealist. They make up 13% of the meat-eating consumer population. While Patty enjoys a good deal as well as the next person, it’s not the only criterion for purchases and can get tossed right out the window if she really wants it. (I will forfeit a much wanted item for cost – her, never!) If she knows the meat is a product of the United States and the brand cares about sustainability, she will purchase it regardless of price.

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Five Opportunities to Sell More Fresh Meat

sell-more-fresh-meatAt Midan, our Market Research Team is always scoping out the consumer trends that are having the biggest impact on the meat industry. A key part of our job is to help our clients understand the implications those trends can have on their business. By assigning meaning to facts and figures, we can help turn meat trends into opportunities.

So what opportunities should be on your radar? I’ve outlined five that you might find helpful as you jump into the new year:

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Mining Targets for Creative Insights Pays Off

Basic marketing tells us that in order for someone to pay attention to a message, it has to be relevant to them. So how do you make your messages relevant? You get to know your target. You can scream “buy me, buy me” all you want, but when people are exposed to tons of ads a day, you won’t break through unless you strike a nerve with your intended audience.

Here at Midan, in order to develop communications for our clients that are relevant and attention- grabbing, we get to know the needs and wants of the target. We conduct primary research or review secondary research in order to understand how the product or service fits in the target’s life. To me, there is no better way get to know your target than to talk with them face to face. Even if it’s only five minutes in a grocery store, you can learn about who they are as people and what the product means to them. I discovered this firsthand when I conducted consumer intercepts for various clients’ meat brands.

When getting to know a target, the most important question I try to answer is, “What problem does my product or service solve for the target beyond a simple functional benefit?” Great creative thought starters that lead to a compelling message usually lie beyond the functional benefit. If you don’t uncover those unexpected insights that connect the target with the product, often times the creative team is not set up for success. If the creative team doesn’t have those connections, their message will be too broad and won’t directly speak to the target.

A great example of this concept happened when we developed a promotion for Tyson’s Chairman’s Reserve® Premium Meats brand. We conducted in-store interviews and discovered that our core meat-loving target would drive pretty far out of their way to go to a store they knew had better meat. They weren’t willing to settle for what was convenient. They loved higher quality meat and made getting it a priority. This insight led our creative team to the “Never Settle” campaign, which reminded consumers that they shouldn’t ever settle when it comes to the premium beef and pork they are putting on their table.

Digging a little deeper and really connecting with our target audience uncovered a way for us to develop strong creative with spot-on messaging. So even if you think you already know your target, take the time to excavate beyond the surface. You are likely to expose the kind of insights that can lead to a creative gold mine.

GMOs: Fact vs. Fiction

If you’re like me, you’ve begun to notice that the term “GMO” is popping up everywhere.

At Midan, we make it our business to be aware of the concerns consumers have about the food they eat. Our Market Research Team conducts research on emerging trends when we see them begin to mainstream. Once I hear certain buzz words at school drop-off where moms are gathered, I know for sure it’s time to start thinking about researching the topic. I knew that questions about GMOs weren’t going away anytime soon, and I figured they would probably grow once I saw the popularity of the new documentary GMO OMG on social media. This well-done documentary chronicles a father’s quest to get answers about GMOs.

Midan conducted focus groups in Chicago among people aware of the term GMO and fielded an online quantitative survey on the topic. We will be releasing some of those results later this month. People are pretty uneasy; they don’t truly understand what GMO really means, beyond playing back the words “genetically modified organism.” The focus group conversation reminded me a lot of how people talked about growth hormones and antibiotics in past research we have conducted.

Keep your eyes peeled for our research. In the meantime, take a look at these great articles debunking GMO myths in mainstream publications:

The New Yorker: Debate over GMO labeling 

Forbes: Results of large-scale GMO study 

Today’s Natural vs. Organic Fresh Meat Consumer

Two years ago, we launched our Consumers’ Case market research platform. This research is our ongoing effort to help the meat industry stay in-tune with the ever-changing consumer. Our Market Research Team is continuously analyzing changes in consumer attitudes and behavior in an effort to determine how those changes will directly affect the meat case. Our goal is to identify opportunities to help the meat industry capitalize on shifts in consumer behavior.

As part of the Consumers’ Case platform, today we’re launching the results of Today’s Natural vs. Organic Fresh Meat Consumer. This research takes a deep dive into who is purchasing natural and organic meat products, their perceptions of the category and the factors that are driving purchases.

The reason we chose natural and organic meat as our next Consumers’ Case topic is that we continue to see a huge void in relevant information on this topic as it relates to fresh meat. There are several resources that regularly report on natural and organic products, but very little is actually reported for fresh meat. We haven’t been able to find answers to the questions we’ve had or those that we’ve been asked by our clients, so we decided to conduct a study ourselves.

If you have a natural and/or organic program or are thinking about offering products in this category, this research report will help you better understand your target consumer, and the best ways to engage and educate them.  This is the first research report focused specifically on natural and organic fresh meat products. For this research we looked at natural meat users separate from organic meat users, and also looked at three specific proteins for each:  beef, pork and chicken.

The number of natural meat products offered at retail continues to grow. Organic meats continue to account for a relatively small but growing percentage of total meat sales. We see continued strong growth for both these products categories in the future. Understanding purchasers of natural and or organic meat will help you better market your products to your current consumers, and also better communicate with potential new customers.

Please check out this new research and let me know your thoughts. You can purchase the report by going to our website, MidanMarketing.com. If you have any questions or feedback, feel free to email me directly m.uetz@midanmarketing.com. I hope you enjoy this latest installment of Midan’s Consumers’ Case market research.

My first few months at Midan

It’s been about four months since I started working at Midan Marketing. How could I have ever imagined working with a team of professionals who are not only extremely smart about meat and how to promote it, but are genuine, committed and an absolute pleasure to work with? Looks like I finally have my dream job!

I pretty much hit the ground running my first week at Midan. I got to dig in on a brand tracking study, getting the most value and quality for our client, keeping the details intact. A qualitative project was already underway so it was a new experience for me to understand a unique method for getting consumer feedback. At the end of the first few weeks, I have to admit the most fun I had was working on a proprietary Midan project called Manfluence, thinking about men grocery shopping and cooking! [Read more…]

Why data rules the marketing world

You probably spent a lot of time this past holiday season shopping for gifts for the loved ones on your list. Maybe you got your mom an iPod so she can finally retire that pile of CD’s in the minivan. Or maybe your little nephew was all about the latest cartoon character toy from Nickelodeon®. Or perhaps you finally got that new five-speed blender for your special someone. If it’s the last case, you probably noticed that you now can’t escape online ads for kitchen appliances. Getting sick of all the microwave and toaster bargains popping up on your screen? Well, just blame the data. [Read more…]

Bringing research to life with design!

As marketers, we can be faced with hundreds of statistics, numbers and studies every day. We’ve all worked on many spreadsheets and have sat through even more PowerPoint presentations. And after a while, they all start to look the same.  And do we ever really remember any of the numbers? Usually not. [Read more…]

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