Diana Gabbard, consumer and shopper insights FVC at BP, is the lead for consumer and shopper insights for the retail marketing team including over 9,500 gas stations in the east of Rockies area. At last year’s TMRE, Gabbard sat down with IIR’s Marc Dresner to discuss BP’s consumer insights transformation that is being led by Gabbard.
With a great deal of experience in a variety of industries, she has found the gasoline category to be very different from other retail categories. In fact to consumers, gasoline is a very perfunctory category with very low involvement and mostly negative emotion.
“This leads us down a different insights path. It leads us to a very behavioral-based foundation of research that we use to then latter up to more of the attitudes and the choices that the consumers make,” Gabbard explained.
She has added several new research tools to the toolbox of the retail marketing team. In addition, Gabbard has worked to engage and excite the team, getting them a little bit close to the consumers and get excited about research.
While expanding the toolkit, Gabbard wanted to get people very comfortable and understanding the value of the different tools. She commented, “It is about engaging those stakeholders at every step of the way as well as building the trust with the team that these techniques and tools would deliver the results that would help transform the business.”
A lot at BP has changed since Gabbard arrived just three and a half years ago. Today, BP is using more mixed methodological types of project approaches, as well as a lot more technology.
“We are really creating an excitement and the research and insights ‘buzz’ around BP helping to represent the consumer voice,” she said.
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