In the past few years I’ve come across quite a few aspiring planners (of all ages) and ‘I’m strong strategically’ senior agency people who seem to be under the impression that the only place that strategic thinking can possibly come from is the pages of a book. You know the ones, they have 50+ marketing … Continue reading Strategy is not just about book smarts
I changed opticians a couple of years ago - after a very minor eye problem that my high street opticians backed away from in horror and swiftly packed me off to the local eye hospital, I decided that I needed eyecare that was a little less commoditised. So my Dad referred me (as his mate had previously … Continue reading CERM is the way forward when marketing service industries
I was in an agency internal client team meeting recently, talking about some stuff I'd been working on, when someone else in the room piped up with "and the Insight Team have come up with this document that...". I was taken aback for a moment - after all, traditionally Planning and Insight are normally pretty … Continue reading what happens to Planning when Insight belongs to the maths geeks?
I was at a research debrief with an agency recently and the following is more-or-less exactly how the conversation went afterwards: Client: “I really liked your presentation” Agency-and-me: “Erm, thank you” Client: “Because it wasn’t all charts and numbers” Agency-and-me: *crosses fingers that client is being serious and not sarcastic about our report based on … Continue reading research report writing – straight from the client’s mouth
A work distraction to rival twitter landed on the doormat this morning. Stable Stereotypes is a collection of pen portraits of the equestrian eccentrics that populate the horsey world, collated from a regular feature in Horse & Hound. Normally, I imagine this wouldn’t be of much interest to the readers of a blog about Account … Continue reading stereotypes that really do have a place in the creative brief
I watched the next episode of Mary Portas: Secret Shopper last night. Not really a good idea because she winds me up, but this week’s focus was on the sofa industry and since one of the agencies I work for has a client in that sector I thought I’d better tune in. What really set me … Continue reading great insight isn’t just about what people *said*
When my first ever Planning Director was interviewing me for the job, he asked “when was the last time you were on a bus?”. He had a point. Its all very well for Account Planners and the like to say that they are ‘always listening’ (actually, I think I like that better than ‘always thinking’…), but … Continue reading don’t just ‘put a planner on it’ – understand your audience first
In pursuit of Insight, I’ve tried an awful lot of ways of trawling through desk research. I’ve enjoyed access to experienced desk researchers who come back with 100 pages on everything-you-ever-wanted-to-know-about-air-fresheners and work experience students who think Lexis Nexis is a kind of car. I’ve also done my fair share of my own desk research … Continue reading You sometimes don’t know what you’re digging for until you find it
Like many other Planners I suspect, I’ve been pulling together a lot of insight pieces for work recently looking at the effect of the downturn economy on buying behaviour. Since it’s proper paid-for-by-my-employer stuff drawing on all the groups and depths the research team have been doing with mums recently, I can’t really share it … Continue reading understanding value
Interesting client feedback via a Research buddy today – one of their clients had apologised for not putting quantitative work their way recently. He explained that his role was now more about analysing his own customer data and buying in qualitaitive insight than farming out huge ‘how many and how much’ surveys. If we accept … Continue reading Quant is dead, long live Insight?