Posted by Jossie Clayton on August 13, 2010
- “What can be measured and manipulated statistically is not only seen as real; it comes to be seen as the only or whole reality” – David Boyle: The Tyranny of Numbers
- “We look – however uneasily – for ways to quantify quality” – Jeremy Bullmore
- “When you are a bear of very little brain, and think of Things, you sometimes find that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out in the open and has other people looking at it” – Winnie the Pooh
- “Too often we measure everything and understand nothing. The three most important things you need to measure in a business are customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction, and cash flow” – Jack Welch
- ”The rise of word-of-mouth and buzz marketing couldn’t come at a better time – or a worse one…it is enormously difficult to quantify return on investment from this most ephemeral of media” – Catharine Taylor
Borrowed with pride from all over the place
Posted by Rosa Wilkinson on August 9, 2010
We are pleased to announce the arrival of Anjul Sharma as Senior Consultant and Head of Qualitative Research.
Anjul is a First Class Honours graduate in Sociology with an MA in Communications Studies (from Brunel University and the University of Leeds respectively). She has been working in research for 14 years and has spent the last 10 years at The Research Business International and latterly Synovate in the UK. Her most recent role (also for Synovate) led her to be based in Dubai but overseeing qualitative research across Central and Eastern Europe and the Middle East.
Anjul has worked across a wide range of sector landscapes for multinational brand owners including: FMCG, transport, media, business-to-business and financial services. She has worked on a wide variety of projects including brand positioning and communications development, motivational marketing / segmentation, customer experience, NPD, loyalty, portfolio optimisation and employee research.
Anjul loves the thrill of applying innovative, creative and engaging approaches to the business of her clients in order to motivate them towards effective action. She has a reputation for promoting expertise in the research industry both nationally and internationally through papers, speaking at conferences, training and spearheading initiatives. But perhaps Anjul is best known for her work in helping clients to understand different cultures and ethnic groups in new and enlightening ways.
When she is not working, Anjul loves travelling and is particularly excited about how brands and products adapt in different markets and cultures – illustrated by her interest in building Islam-centric brands. When stationary (!), she enjoys yoga and aerobics as well as singing in a local choir. Anjul also visits a local senior citizen to offer conversation, housework and learn about the world from the perspective of someone who has ‘seen it all’ at the wonderful age of 88 years…
Posted by Dave Lawrence on June 18, 2010
Recent research by Mum Poll highlighted the fact that having a child can be the cause of extreme emotions, both pleasurable and painful.
Whilst ‘most’ mothers acknowledge that having kids is the best thing that has happened to them, many also struggle to come to terms with their new identity, financial pressures and new found responsibilities. Fundamentally many mothers feel they lose a sense of personal identity as they become the ‘Mother of Sam’ rather than the individual they once were. Emotionally many can also be overwhelmed by the challenge of providing moral guidance, home security and nutritional meal times, made even more fraught by judgemental peers and mixed messages from the media and childcare specialists.
The Mum Poll study’s primary finding was that mothers are becoming increasingly competitive, with around 4 in 10% claiming that they cannot help but brag about their children’s achievements. Additionally there was a high incidence of mums who admit to being ultra competitive in dressing their children in the latest fashion attire, a dynamic that is being tapped into by high end trainer brand ‘Onitsuka Tiger’ which this week launched a pre-school range of footwear in Harrods and Selfridges (starting at £35 per pair).
Beyond this level of parental vanity, many brands are well aware that this can be such a difficult emotional phase and duly provide plenty of support and guidance via ’Mother & Baby Clubs’ delivering a constant stream of material through websites, email newsletters, direct mail, bounty packs and so forth. However whilst many brands tap into the angst and peer competitiveness of young mothers, there are far fewer that play to the emotional highs.
Of course it’s important to avoid the saccharin ‘Werther’s Original’ approach to brand communciations but at a time when parents are being placed under huge pressure from all quarters, it would be refreshing to see brands taking a more balanced approach to family marketing, acknowledging not only the pain but also the pleasures of parenting.
Posted by Alan Morrison on May 21, 2010
How do you target mainstream men in markets where they are not traditionally the consumers? Typical marketers’ responses play to the stereotype: build a proposition around macho fitness (eg. Pepsi Max in low sugar drinks), turn it into a tool/gadget (eg. Wilkinson Sword secateurs in gardening), make it a challenge (eg. Lindt chilli variant in chocolate) and of course make it about sex (eg. Lynx in deodorants).
So, with great respect for tried and tested marketing tricks, I’m pleased to see Philips have launched an iron: the GC4490, presumably named to cue associations with car parts and obscure trade codes for masonry drill-bits. It’s “tool marketing” at its best with a design, as AdFreak says, that would be fitting for Darth Vader’s jet ski and it comes with a brilliantly engineered proposition around “more power, more steam, more performance” – an iron as power tool.
It’s a stereotype. But just as real insight often comes from humour (“there’s many a true word spoken in jest”), mass-appeal marketing’s not a bad place to look for frank realities about mainstream society.
Posted by Jossie Clayton on May 21, 2010
“Look for people who will aim for the remarkable, who will not settle for the routine” (David Ogilvy)
“Habit, if not resisted, soon becomes necessity” (St. Augustine)
“If a small group of consumers have built a ritual around your brand, then it may have merit to become a movement” (Anon)
“Quality is not an act, it is a habit” (Aristotle)
“If you need to shake up your creativity, you first need to shake up your routine” (Anon)