What we do
We work globally online and face-to-face, often mixing methods and working iteratively to push the thinking and leverage our expertise to reach the best insight ‘leaps’ and most robust outcomes.
Great stimulus is vital and we know how to get it right, so we work with clients to ensure it will aid not hinder, including helping to create insight statements, mood boards and concepts.
We use hallmark movement-based techniques when face to face to help people engage more naturally and fully and a range of other methods including video ethnography and image work.
Outputs vary on a needs basis and flex to fit the available time and budget, from a full presentation to a fast verbal ‘hot debrief’ followed by crisp, clear summary charts.
Brand positioning / equity / assets
We do a lot of work on positioning – particularly re-positioning, when change is needed.
Our backgrounds in brand consultancy and marketing mean we bring real expertise to the table – but nobody knows your brand like you do, so collaborating is vital. We might start with a knowledge/trends rewind and a workshop with your team to develop potential ways forward, follow this with consumer workshops, review with you to narrow down the options and then conduct individual, face to face or digital consumer work to help us reach a way forward.
When exploring brand equities/ assets, we may also collaborate with a trusted semiotician and/or quant agency offering implicit testing measures.
Innovation / brand stretch
We help you innovate in a faster, more agile, more adaptive way, guided by insight and our experience and skills in foresight, strategy and innovation.
We work interactively and iteratively, matching the techniques to the task and may suggest a mix of one or more methods: knowledge rewind, trends analysis, workshops with you, individual or community work with consumers online, groups and/or big face-to-face, interactive workshops with both consumers and clients.
We take as leading a role as you want (or need), operating within the team as required, and acting as ‘critical friend’ throughout and we can either help or lead in guiding the development both of stimulus and concepts.
Comms / creative development
Having worked in advertising means we’re often asked to help clients with comms development.
This might be early-stage work, in which we go fishing for emotional territories from which to build a compelling story, assessment of alternative routes/scripts and/or detailed optimisation work.
We aim to ‘mimic reality’ as much as we can, exploring ideas with minimal preamble and using very open questions (or indeed, no questions at all).
We may recommend an individual digital phase to gain system 1 responses, followed by a face to face phase (in person or online) to work on understanding why and optimisation.
Design / packaging
We are highly skilled in design and packaging, coming from our previous roles in strategy for design and retail.
This might be at the level of corporate or brand identity (involving internal as well as consumer consultation) or at the level of individual brand design.
We’ve reviewed the response to current and past designs to reach a clear brief for the future, tested alternative design routes, and everything in between
As with our work on comms, we often recommend a mixed-method approach, using digital to gain system 1 responses, and a face to face phase either (in person or online) to work on understanding the ‘why’ behind people’s reactions, and optimisation.
Category / behaviour analysis
We’re often asked to help clients get under the skin of how people perceive and engage in their category, or one they want to enter
Often this involves individual information-gathering on shopping and consumption habits and attitudes, followed by face to face work (either online or in person) to drill down into what we’re learning, and explore the truth of insight hypotheses.
We then apply our marketing expertise to help make sense of how people map the category, the ‘rules of play’, key drivers for success, and implications for your brand(s).
B2B / executive research
We’ve worked with notable organisations (even nations) on the attitudes of businesses to what they offer.
This has involved high-level interviews with senior people in business and govermen, academic experts or the medical or dental professions.
The fact that we are ourselves senior people with mixed backgrounds and have worked at high levels in a range of organisations means we’re taken seriously by interviewees and are able to have a business-sensible conversation with them.
Internal research / consultation
A number of clients have engaged us to bring our energy, facilitation and engagement skills to internal work
We’ve explored attitudes to corporate culture and purpose with small and large groups of staff at different levels (usually anonymously, to ensure full engagement and honesty) and reported on the implications for the business going forward.
Our backgrounds in management and teamworking consultancy skills help us provide clients with additional feedback on these issues, if required.
We also frequently asked to attend internal strategy days, either as facilitator or ‘voice of the consumer’.
Approach to international projects
When working cross-market, rather than commissioning local partners to do the work and synthesising their findings, we lead and actively take part in all aspects of the project.
We plan and brief partners in our trusted network and attend every live session (either remotely or in person and in the room with consumers), allowing us to intervene and follow up directly to achieve consistent depth of insight. We then handle all the analysis and reporting, collaborating with our partners to ensure we understand the cultural context.
This ensures the same standard of understanding, analysis and clarity of outcomes across all markets.