Category Archives: Customer Research

Master of Disguise – Texas Roadhouse CEO Goes Incognito for External Learning

“It’s important that I not be recognized when scouting. I have Bubba teeth to dive to another level. The goofier you are, the more folks don’t care about telling you stuff.”  Kent Taylor, Texas Roadhouse CEO

Photo: Texas Roadhouse Facebook.

Photo: Texas Roadhouse Facebook.

Getting closer to your business operations, employees and even competitors doesn’t require a trip to your local pop-up costume store.  Save that for this year’s Halloween shopping.

Kent Taylor, the founder and CEO of Texas Roadhouse provides a funny reminder that business leaders need to avoid the ivory tower syndrome and get out into the market for real learning. Continue reading

CA Winery Blends Packaging & Consumer Insights To Create New Products

Photo: Stranger & Stranger.

Packaging is often an under-appreciated and under-utilized marketing asset.

I’m not talking about the marketing joke with the basic theme that every new brand manager wants to change the label design.  Rather, let’s explore how packaging (both structure and design) can become part of the actual concept and go-to-market strategy.

A California winery has just launched a new range of wines, that in my view, addresses a fundamental issue with buying wine:  more often than not, consumers lack basic wine knowledge and are thus intimidated, confused and uncomfortable buying wine.  But it’s not their fault.  It’s the fault of the wine industry.  I speak as a former wine importer and distributor who used packaging to address this hurdle. Continue reading

6 Management & Marketing Ideas from Facebook and Lululemon

New ideas, clever approaches and important reminders always jump off the page during my business reading, especially those that might apply to challenges I’m facing or will likely face again.

I’d like to share six management and marketing ideas that stood out to me recently, along with an “action step thought starter” for each one. Continue reading

Ask Your Customer

How do you know what your customer really thinks?

Customer understanding and market research should be key components of your strategic marketing planning.  This is often a significant expenditure, but you don’t always have to invest big bucks to understand your customer.  When possible, take advantage of low-cost, easy-to-implement options such as the following example from Amazon.  Continue reading