The Challenge McCormick Foods is highly regarded in the Australian food industry as a manufacturer of herbs and spices, recipe mix meal bases, marinades and instant packet sauces as well as other key brands such as Aeroplane Jelly and Keens Curry and Mustard.

McCormick Foods engaged Field Agent™ for a two-part project to gain an understanding of shoppers and consumers of store bought marinades. Part 1 focused on how and when consumers use marinades, their thoughts on store bought versus home-made marinades and how store-bought marinades could be improved. Part 2 was targeted to the same Agents who completed Part 1. Each Agent was asked to go into a Coles supermarket and purchase two flavours from the new ‘Marinade-in-a-Bag’ product range so they could go home, cook with it and provide real-time insights on the ease of use, packaging, flavour enjoyment, and insights into new potential flavour developments.

Part 2 of the project also allowed McCormick Foods to collect photographs of the finished meal Agents had cooked on the plate. An in store photo to confirm display in the store and a photo of the products purchase with the receipt were also included.

The Project

Field Agent™ was used to survey 180 consumers (Agents) from across Australia who participated in Part 1 of the McCormick Foods marinade research. Once on the shelf each Agent was asked to purchase any 2 of the McCormick ‘Marinade-in-a-Bag’ products, take a photo of the product on the shelf in the supermarket, take a photo of the purchased product with receipt, cook with the marinade, take a photo of the finished meal and complete the survey ‘in their home.’

Each Agent was asked questions based on:

  • Which brands of marinades they mostly purchase
  • Time of year they mostly cook with marinade products
  • Where they mostly purchase meat for marinating
  • What improvements or feedback they had
  • Would they purchase this product again
  • Would they recommend this product to friends or family
  • What other flavours would like to see
  • Rank possible new flavour names
  • What they thought of the packaging; was it easy to use and open
  • How convenient it was to use versus other marinade products
  • What they liked/disliked about using this product
  • What flavour/s would they like to see in a marinade range
  • How long did they marinate for
  • If they followed the recipe on the pack or made their own
  • Which flavour/s of marinades they mostly purchase

The Results

McCormick received invaluable consumer feedback on their new ‘Marinade-in-a-Bag’ product to help drive further development of the range. Verbatim comments provide additional information on the target market behaviours, values and attitudes toward cooking marinated meat at home as well as further insight into market demands and trends.

“McCormick Foods was keen to use The Realise Group’s new Field Agent iphone technology to understand more about what consumers considered when purchasing marinades and how they used them in their home. The results we received from this 2 part project gave us data that provided a real insight into the marinades market and how consumers used our new ‘marinade-in-a-bag’ product Capturing real time images of how consumers cooked with our marinades in their home was critical. These images gave us the ability to see into people’s homes and to better understand what’s important toconsumers when using a marinade product. Now that we have seen the benefits of what this cost effecitve tool can do we’re keen to consider it for use it in future projects to access main grocery buyers across Australia.”

Marketing Innovations Manager, McCormick Foods

Sample of Agent comments

“It’s easy & convenient to use, put the meat in the bag the night before and it’s ready when you get home from work. No washing up and minimal waste.” Happy Valley, VIC

“Loved that I could do it all without getting my hands dirty or have to wash dishes afterwards.” Cranbourne, VIC

“I would recommend as it’s quick and easy & something I would keep in my pantry.” Wangaratta VIC

“Fantastic flavour and easy to use when busy.” Nedlands, WA

“Very convenient. Usually marinating involves getting very messy. Putting the meat into the bag meant no mess.” Buckety, NSW

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