Coca-Cola and Unilever are among the first companies to use a new research tool from tech specialist Dunnhumby for gaining crucial intelligence and analysis of customer buying decisions.

The Behavioural Attitudinal Research (BAR) enables brands to carry out research among millions of existing and recently-lapsed customers.

The results are returned to brand owners within five days, after which brand owners can launch their own surveys through an online portal targeted at customers who voluntarily participate in Dunnhumby’s Shopper Thoughts research panel.

Dunnhumby said the tool could be used to find out why, for example, shoppers were tempted to try a product or why they no longer bought the brand and the barriers preventing them from buying the product or why they were using it less than before.

“We do a lot of hypotheses development,” said Coca-Cola future consumption shopper marketing manager Kate Freeman.

“BAR helps us to validate these hypotheses and make faster, better-informed decisions going forward.”