Identifying unique brand attributes for D.E. Master Blenders

D.E. Master Blenders 1753 (a Dutch corporation which manufactures and trades in coffee, tea and other groceries) wanted to get a better understanding of how their brands are performing vis-à-vis their competitors.

What did we do?

We set up an innovative online implicit measurement study in 13 countries around the globe. In a competitive setting, these studies identified the extent to which brand attributes (logos, colors, tag lines and sound bites) are associated strongly and uniquely to the D.E. Master Blenders’ key brands.
In each of the 13 countries, we recruited a group of 2,000 coffee buyers with a national-representative distribution. These participants completed a 15-minute online survey in which they performed 6 implicit tasks. In total, we measured around 60 assets per country.
Each exercise first presented the participants with the asset. Shortly after, they were probed with a set of 10 brands, each displayed in simple text for 1 second. If they associated the asset with the displayed brand, they hit the space bar. If not, they simply did nothing.

The results

For both the key brand and competitor brands, we defined:

  • Fame: whether or not the asset was associated with a brand
  • Uniqueness: among those who saw an association, how unique is that association to the brand
  • Unique Fame: on the total sample, how unique are those associations to the brand

We delivered contextual content reports with clear-cut presentations on fame, uniqueness and unique fame. In addition, we provided D.E. Master Blenders with a modeler to make custom data selections with real-time visualization.
The project eventually lead to D.E. Master Blenders using this research for a new communication and packaging design strategy.

How did the client experience it?

“Applying the learnings of this survey to new pack designs lead to a significant increase on shelf performance (improved brand salience and SKU find ability) of our brands.”
Pascal Mignolet, Head of Market Research Director at D.E. Master Blenders