Ben & Jerry's Pint Slices show how sweet consumer research can be
Ben & Jerry's has entered the frozen novelty snack category with its latest ice cream innovation: Pint Slices. The company's top four flavors,chocolate-fudge brownie, chocolate chip cookie dough, vanilla peanut butter cup and Americone Dream, can now be found in round, chocolate-coated single-servings, according to Food Business News.
The ice cream maker said 82% of its consumers already enjoy novelty food items and consumers have already been slicing their Ben & Jerry's pints to make ice cream sandwiches.
The product concept was born from the company's practice of slicing open pints to ensure chunks and swirls of ingredients are evenly distributed, delivering the "best part of the pint."
Sometimes a potential new product is staring you in the mouth, waiting to be discovered.
This is an example of manufacturer engagement with consumers at its best. Brands should be tracking more than just which products consumers buy. They should study changing purchasing patterns around certain holidays, times of year, and events or circumstances for which shoppers buy products.
How consumers eat the food products should also be top of mind for brands. Knowing this kind of behavior inside and out could lead to opportunities to innovate beloved products, as Ben & Jerry's has done. Coca-Cola did this by creating Cherry Sprite after noticing it was a popular combination at its Freestyle soda fountain machines.
Social media is an easy way for brands to take the pulse of their consumer base. Encouraging followers to share their product experiences on Facebook and Twitter can provide a valuable window into the consumer experience, and reveal how products are actually used, regardless of how they are positioned.
- Food Business News Ben & Jerry's Pint Slices: From R.&D. to retail