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Protein Bar Research Aims for 'Focus Feasts'

In-the-moment research helps deliver a tasty menu for a new concept by The Protein Bar.

As a dscout client advisor, I help people design mobile research projects on our platform. Sometimes dscout is just one piece of a multifaceted project, maybe as a complement to quant, IDIs, ethno, focus groups or — in this case — focus feasts!

Recently we helped The Protein Bar conduct mobile research for its newest endeavor, Thrive 360 Eatery, by facilitating some in-the-moment menu research. We also identified an opportunity to complement their dscout mobile with a few focus groups to try their new menu.

We called it a Focus Feast, and a group of hard-working hungry people here at dscout were first in line to participate. The first Focus Feast was held here at dscout, conveniently located down the street from The Protein Bar’s “idea greenhouse,” a special restaurant site where they test new menu items.

Protein Bar head of marketing, Julie Saliba, leads the dscout team through a series of bite-size research exercises.

The mobile menu research had been designed to understand the first impressions of the new menu by people who weren’t familiar with The Protein Bar. These Focus Feasts, on the other hand, were to facilitate discussions and gather insights into the flavors, experience, and presentation of menu items.

There were unique benefits to both the in-person feast and the mobile dscout study. But together, they yielded actionable and important insights — from packaging changes to measuring the difference between initial expectations of menu items and how the food actually tasted.

For example, we mapped our emotions to critical moments in the experience: from walking through the doors and assessing the menu, to consuming the last bite. In reviewing that emotional map, The Protein Bar’s marketing team noted a drop in our positivity during the ordering process, and identified a correlation to their initial mobile menu research where participants had expressed confusion over the menu’s organization.

Additionally, upon seeing how poorly one to-go meal looked after we got to our office, the marketing team decided to immediately change how the meals would be packaged.

Being a Focus Feast participant was my first chance to get a first-hand look at how our mobile research fits into larger research efforts. Congratulations to The Protein Bar team on their grand opening! We were happy to be a part of the process. Read more about the mobile menu research on dscout here.

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