We have come a long way since focus group discussions. We have more contextual understanding of consumers, observation etc. These have been great shifts in making the consumer world more granular, real and immersive for clients and has enabled us to provide better insights.
However, even if you have a great insight there is often a gap between insights and what eventually gets put out by brands. You know it when a client has done a lot of research but is still stuck in the same old way of thinking. We tend to brush it aside as a matter of poor execution within client organizations.
However, our job as researchers is to ensure that deep insights inspire ideas and bring about change.
Insights become impactful when they are internalized by organizations and people. Internalization helps insights become learning. Learning allows brands to make new connections that lead to innovation and are the basis of what they do. Moreover, internalized insights can become currency for communication.
It is important to think about how we share learning with clients. Without this we are left with inert ideas – ideas that are not utilised or thrown into new combinations.
What prevents internalisation at the moment:
- Not enough time – the process of making connections requires you to immerse in a subject but then to step out of it and re look at it with fresh eyes/new perspective
- Not engaging different senses – too reliant on one way communication. Internalization requires cognition and empathy
- Not seeking inspirations from different perspectives.
Workshops have been a solution for bridging the gap between insight and idea. But not every project ends up in a workshop. The opportunity is to see how we can do more to make insights impactful even in a 60 minute ‘presentation’.
Here are a few things to think about:
1) It is important to engage all the senses – not just listening but visuals and artefacts. What are the ways we can convert insights into artefacts e.g. post cards or a curated wall of learning
2) Learn by doing – use cue cards or frameworks and get clients to populate these
3) Bringing other category/brand inspiration into the thinking process
What this means is we need to re think how we conduct fieldwork (yes even if it is a group discussion) so that we can get more visual and tangible output beyond just conversations.
“Perhaps the aha experience when everything finally snaps into place marks the culmination of the insight process. Perhaps it isn’t the insight itself” – Gary Klein
PS: This is the second time we have referenced death in our posts – perhaps a sign of the changes in the industry – but we will try and be more optimistic in the subsequent posts!