Heineken Extra Fresh: beer in the fresh fixture?

With innovations, straying from your brand's well-trodden path is not always easy. But sometime you have to have the courage to create new opportunities. Heineken wants to share the taste of very freshly-brewed beer and has therefore selected a position outside the (ambient) beer fixture in the supermarket.

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Shopper Research | Blauw Research

By placing Heineken Extra Fresh between the fresh juices, Heineken is emphasising the freshness of the pils. But how do you reach beer drinkers when the product is situated elsewhere in the supermarket? And even more importantly, how do you convince them to purchase this new product?

Using our shopper research we supported Heineken during the pilot study, in which Heineken Extra Fresh was launched in a limited number of supermarkets. In-store observations and shopper interviews established what customers of the product observed in the store, what they did and didn't like and what they thought of this new beer. It was evidently not easy to please customers as a beer brand in between fresh juices. How distinctive the packaging is, can also often be overlooked if you are not in the customer's mindset.

From this research, Heineken learned the best way to draw attention to its innovation. Stand-alone chillers placed in tactical positions in the store caught the eye and there was now a moment to draw attention to the message. We also advised Heineken on how best to communicate this message to enhance its impact.

But what do purchasers think of it now?

Estimating potential in advance is often done using research. And that is usually subject to the fact that there are so many influencing factors on the actual launch that absolute figures are almost impossible to forecast. Fortunately, with a pilot study, the opinions of the first purchasers regarding the product can be checked.

We approached these trialists and conducted a brief telephone interview. This gave Heineken insight into what types of people could be identified amongst consumers and how they reacted to the product. The majority reacted enthusiastically to the refreshing taste of the freshly-brewed beer. A small group remained sceptical, ever after sampling it. Heineken now knows the distinctions that exist between consumers and how these various target groups can be reached. The potential of Heineken Extra Fresh has been revealed, so now Heineken can get on with rolling it out so that the whole of the Netherlands can enjoy this beer.