Robin Brown

Senior Vice President of Consumer Insights, Environics Research Group

Joseph Chen

Brand Building, Consumer and Market Insight, Unilever Canada


How Unilever Connected with the New Canadian Consumer

This session will describe how Unilever developed a deep understanding of Chinese and South Asian Canadians as part of their strategy to launch brands in 2010 tailored to the needs of these consumers. Partnering with Environics Cultural Markets, they leveraged a combination of geo-demographic data, secondary data and a three month long ethnographic study to assess the opportunities as well as design strategy based on deep insights into the lifestyles and motivations. The focus of this session will be the collaborative new research approach developed between Unilever and Environics. We will examine how the approach challenges the traditional research methodologies by taking the insights to the next level.

Robin Brown

Senior Vice President, Consumer Insights Environics

Robin is currently Senior Vice President for Consumer Insights at Environics. He has twenty years experience in the market research industry, working in the UK, Asia and Canada. He has worked with companies from a wide variety of industries including telecoms, financial services and media. His primary areas of expertise are retail and packaged goods. He has guided clients such as Nestle, Unilever, Tesco, Labatt Breweries and McDonalds on new product development, brand positioning and communication and understanding shopper behaviour.

His has strong interest and experience in understanding the dynamics of consumer and shopper decision-making and the role that brands play. He has also leveraged his international experience to develop a strong track record of research into Canadian newcomers and visible minority communities.


Joseph Chen

Consumer and Market Insight Manager, Unilever Canada

Joseph leads Brand Building, Consumer and Market Insights at Unilever Canada. He oversees all categories from foods, ice cream, home care to personal care with leading brands such as Becel, Hellmann's, Breyers, Dove, Axe, Vaseline, Vim and many more exciting brands.

Prior to Unilever, Joseph was Marketing Research Manager in the beverages sector at Kraft Canada. Prior to Kraft, he spent a few years on the research agency side at both Millward Brown and Ipsos Reid.

Joseph has research papers published in the Journal of International Consumer Marketing, Canadian Journal of Marketing Research, Advances in Consumer Research, Proceedings in 9th Cross Cultural Research Conference, Proceedings in 2004 Asia Pacific Association for Consumer Research Conference and Proceedings in Association for Consumer Research Conference on Gender, Marketing and Consumer Behavior.

He has received a number industry research awards including MRIA research awards as well as ARF David Ogilvy Excellence in Advertising Research award.

Joseph is a part-time faculty member and currently teaching Research Methods at the University of Guelph. Joseph also serves on the board of Client Side Research Council at MRIA.

Esc Key to close