It was my pleasure to present (virtually) with Ryan Dirkmaat, Director Consumer Insights at PepsiCo Frito Lay, at TMRE Digital Week. From the comfort of our home computers, TMRE offered great learnings on the latest trends and techniques to deliver insights in these challenging times.
Alongside his consumer insights remit, Ryan also heads up the Frito Lay COVID-19 insights task force, which acts as the eyes and ears of the organization to monitor what the pandemic means for business, brands, industry and communities.
Thankfully, says Ryan, the company’s market insights platform, Clevr, is doing some heavy lifting with fast and efficient knowledge management. “Clevr could not have come at a better time. When COVID-19 hit, it was easy to keep our fingers on the pulse, and our teams informed and up to date.”
Launched in January 2019, Clevr is PepsiCo’s answer to the age-old question familiar to insights professionals around the globe: “what if we could spend less time looking for insights and more time actually using them?”
Using a best-in-class technology solution, Clevr was developed as the one place to store, search and share knowledge at the Frito Lay division of PepsiCo. It enables marketers and insights professionals to work smarter, not harder – something we could all make use of during this pandemic.
Ryan shared an overview of key metrics on the platform, which is home to thousands of past research reports and hundreds of thousands of external reports. He pointed to the importance and popularity of syndicated sources among his marketers, who had been frustrated by the cumbersome logins and URLs needed to find the information the company was paying for.
On Clevr, syndicated sources are all synched up, Google-style. Users can type, for example, “Gen Z and protein” and see instantly a collection of insights from key sources the organization subscribes to.
The ease of finding this valuable information was what got business partners initially hooked on the platform, Ryan said. Now, during COVID-19, with much less custom and primary research being executed, the need for timely and robust automatic information is even greater.
A short ten months after launch, Ryan and his team conducted a survey to measure ROI on Clevr, with impressive results. In a nutshell, Frito Lay has been able to cut down on the time stakeholders spend finding information by 52%.
They’ve reduced the time it takes to compile insights to answer a business question from twelve to two hours, and cut time to analyze data from 15 to five hours. The number of people stakeholders need to talk with to find an answer also fell 66% – an important gain when we consider current remote working restrictions.
The need for a centralized insights platform has become even more important during this pandemic, during which the Clevr platform has been front and center. Says Ryan, “the triad of remote technology, fingers on the pulse of every new development around COVID-19 and the fact that we’re not able to do as much custom and primary research has made this platform a real blessing.”
Clevr, like all Market Logic market insights platforms, uses three simple principles to guide the business with insights. First, a highly personalized user experience means the technology only delivers the information business managers need, when they need it.
When time and resources are scarce, there’s nothing more important than valuable insights at your fingertips. Second, experts within the organization can curate information behind the scenes so that when marketers self-service search a question like, for example, “what do we know about Gen Z and snacking?” they see promoted and relevant answers.
It’s search engine marketing for insights managers that makes flagship content impossible to ignore. Third, within Knowledge Zones built around strategic topics, like COVID-19 at PepsiCo, subject matter experts can easily update stories and provide Q&A within beautiful design templates.