Helping to Bake the World a Little Greener

When Dawn Foods, a leading supplier of bakery ingredients and restaurant supplies, sought to expand sales of their environmentally friendly product line among small artisanal bakeries, they faced an uphill battle. Marketing niche products like “green” cleaning supplies and paper straws is tricky enough, especially when the target audience includes cost-sensitive small businesses. But marketing them to an even more niche audience—independent artisanal bakeries—presented a multi-faceted challenge.

How do you connect with small businesses to learn their unique preferences? And what messaging is likely to resonate with them strongly enough to initiate trial and turn them into long-term customers?

To find the answers, they turned to 360 Market Reach (now Leger), and we set out to identify which products bakers would be most interested in, which product attributes were most appealing, and how to best communicate those benefits. It’s the sort of highly specialized, targeted research that Leger excels at, leveraging our extensive knowledge and experience with small businesses to connect with hard-to-reach audiences and uncover information vital to business success.

We began by building a proprietary community comprised of small artisanal bakeries. This gave us an invaluable resource that we knew we could rely on for accurate and insightful information, both for this project and for future research.

Over time, we have explored new offerings, had bakers try new products in their bakeries using their machines, explored necessary product benefits, had open discussions on pricing and evaluated sustainable alternatives to bakers’ usual products.

Armed with this always-available community of key business customers and the variety of information we’ve gathered for them over the years, Dawn Foods was able to develop both new products and targeted marketing strategies tailored to the unique preferences of their market segment.

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