How Scout used digital sampling to kickstart a relationship with Sprouts

To support the launch of their new Seafood Snacks line, Scout partnered with Sampler to kickstart new retailer relationships by driving product off shelves, deepen their understanding of their priority shopper personas via highly segmented user journeys, and build future retailer relationships by collecting consumer insights.

Program overview

Scout, a craft seafood brand, faced the challenge of launching its new Seafood Snacks product line in a highly competitive market. In the world of retail, securing and maintaining shelf space is crucial for a brand's success, so Scout’s primary objective was to quickly drive trial to prove demand for their new product and establish themselves as a valuable addition to the shelves at Sprouts Farmers Market.

Sampler helped Scout do exactly that with a coupon sampling program that kickstarted the new retailer relationship by driving product off shelves. Scout also leveraged Sampler’s CRM capabilities to deepen their understanding of their priority shopper personas via highly segmented user journeys, and utilized their post-program insights to establish additional retailer relationships further down the line.

“Going into a new retailer with an innovative product we knew that we had to move quickly to drive trial and show movement. The Sampler team was able to help us with a smart strategy that allowed us to reach our ideal shoppers with a free offer, incentivizing them to pull the product through the register and provide us with valuable feedback. We’ve been really impressed with how thoughtfully the program was designed to maximize insights throughout each step of the journey.” -Kristine Ford, CMO, Scout Canning
User holding two Scout coupons in front of a shelf of Scout Seafood Snacks in Sprouts Farmers Market.
UGC from Scout's Sampler program

Accelerating trial in a new retailer

Recognizing the need for swift action in a new retail environment, Scout employed various tactics to drive velocity in addition to product sampling. They saw good engagement with digital advertising, but the inability to accurately attribute sales to these ads was a challenge. 

Scout also ran in-store demos at various retailers. While they were able to attribute sales to these demos, they proved to be far more costly than their Sampler program.

Knowing that Scout was on a tight timeline to move product off shelves, Sampler’s team ensured the coupons reached only high-intent shoppers who regularly visit Sprouts locations in Scout’s target regions. Being cognizant of the fact that forgetting a coupon at home isn’t uncommon for a busy head of household, Sampler’s team built a custom follow-up email journey, which directed shoppers to stores and encouraged them to redeem their coupons. Each touchpoint drove incremental redemptions of the coupon in-store and the purchase of multiple SKUs in addition to the free sample.

"The average cost per unit moved for in-store demos was over 2.5x higher than the per unit cost for the Sampler program."

-Kristine Ford, CMO

More program highlights

Understanding their audience

Sampler's impact went beyond driving Scout’s product off shelves at Sprouts. Scout leveraged Sampler's trusted brand voice and CRM to build an extensive user journey, personalized to each person’s purchase drivers, incorporating additional email and co-branded social touchpoints before, during, and after the user claimed their coupons to boost product awareness, education, and UGC, in addition to redemption of the coupon in-store.

With over 600M first-party data points, Sampler enabled highly segmented email journeys to Scout’s priority shopper personas, like those who care about sustainability and those who live active lifestyles. Content customization and post-campaign insights not only improved immediate engagement but also provided valuable data for Scout's own CRM strategy.

“It was interesting to see how the different audiences responded. It helped us figure out who we should be targeting as our primary consumer. That was really helpful.” -Kristine Ford, CMO

Securing Costco & Walmart listings

The insights from the Sampler campaign played a pivotal role in Scout bringing their Seafood Snacks into coveted retailers like Costco and Walmart. The success of the coupon program, as demonstrated by ratings, reviews, and purchase intent data, served as a powerful tool for Scout in conversations with these retailers, as Scout was able to offer tangible proof of the product’s positive market reception to help them secure valuable shelf space in a competitive retail environment.

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