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Prepared Foods: Are You Reaching Your Primetime Customers?

Tyson Foods shopper studies

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Prepared foods shoppers participating in Tyson Foods Inc.’s studies say that meal planning is the key to maintaining a less stressful dinner hour, but the majority of them also admit they often make their dinner plans at the last minute.1,2 Most of these short-term meal planners are also the most loyal and most frequent prepared foods customers. Are you delivering on what they need?

According to Eric LeBlanc, director of marketing for retail foodservice at Tyson Foods, “The message this research reveals is that we must regard our shoppers’ inability to plan ahead as our call to action, to provide the eleventh-hour solutions they need. This includes ensuring stock is fresh at peak times but also reaching them during the 4:30 p.m. dinner decision hour with inspirational ideas featuring prepared foods that deliver a satisfying dinner experience.”

Types of shoppersThe two most loyal groups of prepared foods shoppers identified in Tyson Foods’ research are “Balancer Parents,” who typically shop once or twice a week looking for a quick, nutritious meal for their family; and “Impromptu Diners,” who make more frequent and impulsive store visits.3

Both respond to digital resources that you already may be using, but it’s important to fine tune messages to promote meal ideas and the dinner experience, instead of individual products and price points. When they reach the store, Balancer Parents might particularly respond to a special of the day that incorporates prepared foods with other items from around the store. Impromptu Diners are looking for convenience. Ensure products are available and the department is staffed at peak times. Use signage that helps these shoppers connect with the meal solutions they seek.

Making these “primetime” customers happy will result in stronger prepared foods sales that could ripple throughout the whole store.



  1. Tyson Foods, On the Go Study, 2014
  2. Prepared Foods Challenge, June 2016
  3. Tyson Foods, Consequences of Failure, 2015, 2016

Editor’s note: This post is sponsored content provided by Tyson Foods Inc.

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