Test – Our previous blog highlighted the 5 forces of Changing Consumer Preference

To innovate and develop new products and to improve existing products it is essential to understand these forces.

In our experience of consumer researching over 6500 food and drink products in order to fully understand these forces in food and drink development it is necessary to drill down deeper in consumer behavior and identify the Emotional and Sensory Insights plus their causes and influences by understanding the:

Emotional DNA of Taste of a food and drink brand / product vs. its competition




The Emotional DNA has 6 components which are complex and detailed and each one is worthy of its own article which we will do in future blogs but are summarized for the moment as

1) The Encounter

How – when and where you a consumer meets a brand or product category will help determine the strength of the consumer relationship with that brand / product

As a general rule from our work we have found that the earlier and deeper the contact e.g. from significant childhood experiences – the more likely the consumer is to be a heavier user and have a stronger emotional bond with that brand / product

2) Lifetime Values and Beliefs

These are open to change as people come across new experiences and influences as they age. These are evaluated against learnt behavior and then either accepted or rejected accordingly e.g. a new experience of ‘foreign food’ on holiday is consciously and sub – consciously evaluated against previous lifetime experiences

3) Learnt Behavior

The experiences encountered of a consumer through childhood years through the teenage transition to adulthood stages will determine how they react to products.

This reaction can be open to change if radical new experiences are encountered but learnt behavior is very powerful and difficult to change. For example a bad experience of an alcoholic product in the teenage years will register in the conscious and sub – conscious and effect negatively on future retrial!

4) Culture

The environment and geographic area will influence learnt behavior For example the meal occasions can be very different in Northern Europe vs. Southern Europe where there are more formal family meal occasions

This has an obvious effect on snacking and grazing habits

5) Taste Palate

This is an area which is changing in intensity and changing at an increasing rate becoming more developed and requiring more intense experiences

The driving forces of this change being fast food, soft drink and ethnic food – all of which offer more intense flavors and experiences

 6) Sensory Physiology

All the above elements of the Emotional DNA will impact the sensory physiology– the appearance – aroma – taste – texture and aftertaste of a food and drink product consumption experience

These elements obviously interact and influence each other and can vary in importance on a product case by case basis but need to be understood to avoid costly mistakes and delays in food and drink development

What is critical in transforming food and drink product development and innovation is to understand the impact of these emotional DNA on the changing consumer preference

In other words why consumers like or dislike a products vs. competitive products in target Need States

To find out more about product innovation through identifying and understanding consumer preference and Emotional DNA – please contact us for further information. We are offering a 30 complimentary minute strategic no obligation consultation to help you optimize your product vs. the competition

If interested please contact info@qepmarketingclinic.com for help with a specific problem you are looking to resolve or seeking a result you are having difficulty obtaining