Thursday
Apr142011

AH - 10 Meal-convenience concepts

Convenience

"SunIdee's pressure cooker approach to innovation resulted in 10 new product concepts within one month, of which multiple were launched within a few months."

Background and opportunity

Albert Heijn has been the leading food retailer of the Netherlands since it opened the first supermarket in 1952. From service to self-service, revolutionary at that time. Albert Heijn is keen on her innovation reputation, taking pride in being the first with new products and services for her customers. One of the leading innovation areas in the supermarket is convenience food; “ready to cook, ready to heat, ready to eat” is the focus area for this product category, making the consumer's life easier on all levels.
SunIdee helped Albert Heijn to create ideas and concepts for their new segmentation: “Maaltijdgemak” (meal-convenience) and “Kookgemak” (cooking-convenience). With the new segmentation strategy almost in place, it was time to fill the innovation funnel with relevant concepts based on consumer insights. Together we created more than 10 new concepts for meal-convenience of which at least 1/3 was introduced within a few months. We also helped in fine-tuning the innovation strategy to get a clear picture of the 'convenience playground'.

Results

More than 150 ideas, bundled in idea booklets for Albert Heijn (all ideas are captured and clustered for future use).

Key input for the decisive management presentation to strengthen the new segmentation strategy of meal-convenience and cooking-convenience with relevant, consumer insight based concepts.

More than 10 relevant meal-convenience concepts with visuals, of which at least 1/3 was introduced within a few months.

Approach

Kick off with key stakeholders. Analysis and developing a thorough understanding of earlier research and translation into workshop materials (build on what is already there).

One-day idea generation workshop with SunIdee tools based on consumer insights and relevant topics and trends for Albert Heijn. The multidisciplinary team consisted of format, merchandising and marketing professionals of Albert Heijn, extended with some external expertise on ready to cook vegetables and ready to heat meals.

SunIdee developed the concepts based on the earlier selected idea clusters. In a half-day working session together with the core team of Albert Heijn we fine-tuned and selected the concepts for the presentation and eventually product development.

The project resulted in key input for the management presentation to get a "Go" for the new segmentation and even better: at least 1/3 of the concepts can be found on the shelves of Albert Heijn at this moment. Like meal-soup, “on the side”, uncooked food and the use of icons to clarify ingredients in convenience meals.