1st Year Anniversary: Caroline & Dan

Joining TVE last September, Caroline and Dan’s first year has certainly been an interesting one! We asked a few all-important questions.

  1. What’s your favourite moment/project highlight of your time so far at TVE?

CC: I’ve loved a recent project on stocks and seasonings. It combined two things I’m fascinated by: firstly, current consumer behaviour and habits; secondly the future direction of a category. As part of the research process we spoke with consumers on WhatsApp about how they cook, how and why they use these products to add flavour and did a Zoom Cook-along in their kitchen! We also hosted an expert foodie panel on key trends in the world of flavour. The whole process was really interesting, and I learned a few bonus cooking tips!

DA: I’d have to go for a recent project on mobile phone users. We created a rich picture of the client’s key target segment through five days of online ethnographic research with consumers. It was really interesting getting into how they rationalised what they prioritised spending money and time on, and how telco fit into their priorities – it definitely had me questioning all the time I’d spent re-watching Atlanta! The real highlight from the project for me is that we’ve used our research to evolve the client’s brand positioning; projects with an element of strategy are always fun to work on!

  1. What (annoying) habits have you picked up since you started working at TVE? e.g. over analysing adverts, supermarket shelf scrutiny, shunning Xbox

CC: Where to start – I’ve picked up so many! Feeling like I know a lot about gaming (I really don’t), using work jargon in everyday conversations, definitely overthinking marketing and wondering how it might fit with that brand’s consumer segmentation! Oh, and off the back of the cooking project I mentioned above, I continue to keep asking people about their relationship with scratch cooking and their favourite flavour and seasoning product… oops!

DA: The main habit is analysing why me or my friends make a purchase. For example, I’m a bit of a sneakerhead, and it became a running joke with friends that I’d turn up to drinks with a new pair. They just don’t see the value in it. Trainers are just ‘those things for your feet’ for them, whereas I get a bit of a kick from knowing the story behind the design, the brand and what they were trying to achieve. Boring for them to hear me talk about it, but I think the same thing when I hear a friend’s spent another £20 perfecting their FIFA Ultimate Team…

  1. Inside the TVE Snack cabinet: Snog marry avoid: chocolate hobnobs, lotus biscuits, Maryland cookies?

CC: Snog – chocolate hobnobs. Marry – Maryland cookies. Avoid – lotus biscuits. Easy.

DA: Snog – Maryland cookies. Marry – chocolate hobnobs. Avoid – lotus biscuits. But add chocolate digestives and the wedding’s off with the hobnobs.

  1. What would you say to yourself on your first day?

CC: Besides don’t panic when a pandemic hits 7 months into the job? No, more seriously I think I’d say – Prepare for a fast-paced, fun and sharp learning curve (you’ll love it)! And maybe, never underestimate the power of a second screen…

DA – Sea monkeys need more care and attention than you think, especially in a pandemic. I’d also tell myself there are no stupid questions. It’s always better to ask and get over any awkward conversations early so you’re worry-free and can crack on with the task.

  1. Describe TVE in three words?

CC: Passionate, conscientious, collaborative

DA: Curious, agile, enthusiastic

The photo was taken on their first day at TVE a year ago. 

By: The Value Engineers

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