Insight helps to identify future trends

How to identify future trends?

Raisio is a corporation with a particular focus on plant-based nutrition expertise, aiming to identify future food trends before they even start. Raisio's Market and Consumer Insight Specialist Juha Eltonen reveals how the Group stays at the forefront of the ever-changing market.


Raisio strives to continuously map the consumer and market developments with its diverse mega- and macrotrends. My task is to identify these trends and provide Raisio’s business unit management with ideas based on these insights. My job is to process the collected data into “what if?”-type of thoughts”, explains Eltonen.


Competitive advantage thanks to Insight


Eltonen’s Insight strategy is based on three cornerstones: his long-time experience in the consumer market, data collection and sorting with the help of M-Adaptive, as well as merging this new type of data with the company’s own big data. This allows for the quantification of phenomena, such as an assessment of a phenomenon’s potential impact on Raisio’s turnover as well as the general benefit to the brand. Raisio perceives the Insight model as a competitive advantage, because it can be used to predict future events.


– M-Adaptive searches the internet and social media for what has been written on a certain topic, what happens around it, how it is commented on and how, for example, competitors are operating. We use this for the analysis of potential trends and the monitoring of traditional media, such as the monitoring of brands, topics and the company. The service is used by both business operations and business sector managers, marketing as well as R & D.


The cooperation between Raisio and M-Brain has lasted for many years already, but the use of Insight services was started only two years ago. According to Eltonen, products designed with the help of Insight have already entered or will be entering the market. Eltonen’s own favorite Raisio product is the traditional Elovena oatmeal. Among his more modern favorites are the Elovena dairy snack as well as cholesterol-lowering Benecol yoghurt.


– In the past, the various business segments were mapping trends in their own fields, had their own consumer research and marketed their own brands, but thanks to the new tools the industry can be viewed more generally and the information can be used by all business areas. In terms of departments, the material is used in planning and research, as well as in the formulation of research questions. The main benefit will, however, come in the form of innovation and in support of product development, as the service is simply a lucrative source of ideas.


Services bring savings


Eltonen sees the Insight services as partly replacing, partly working hand in hand with consumer research. The studied phenomena now reach the company in the form of big and soft data, while in the past consumers were approached directly. Now information becomes visible without research, which Eltonen sees as generating savings.


– Raisio also uses the Industry Monitoring service that provides concise information on topics of interest. If needed, everything is accessible more in-depth through the use of the enclosed links, as well as the underlying database. Management feedback has been good. Thanks to the services, new products have been introduced, a reserve of ideas has been produced and the understanding of the business impact of all kinds of trends has grown. Thus, the distribution of information in the organization has become more efficient.


Although the services and technical solutions have served Raisio commendably, also some challenges have emerged: how do you transform a huge amount of data into processed information? Eltonen himself has solved the problem by classifying the data before distributing it to the organization, amongst others, with the help of M-Brain’s concrete examples. To those interested in Insight data collection, Eltonen recommends to inspect the M-Brain conferences.


– The conference organized in London provided expert knowledge delivered in a fresh way, while simultaneously encouraging the exchange of ideas with other professionals of the field. Working with M-Brain has had a startup spirit, with flexible, diverse and open-minded vibes.


Image: Raisio



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