- Stakeholder interviews
- Focus groups
- Market review
- Competitor analysis
- Audience profiling and segmentation
- Brand assessment and audit
Research and insight provide the data we need to establish an enduring, successful brand. We believe in fact-based branding. We deploy a set of proprietary research tools to address branding challenges and lay the foundation for branding decisions. We seek to ask questions of those that lead, that follow, those that see from the inside and those that look in from the outside. Clear and objective data that leads to valuable understanding is our goal.
We work to find a triangulation of three vital concepts; The competitive landscape and how you differentiate from those your customers see as alternatives; Your customers’ needs and perceptions and what is important to them; Your offering and does your product or service line up with the two above points. Insight develops these three concepts into a brand platform that builds in strategic business advantage from the start.
Understanding a competitive context.
‘Difference matters because different sells’ and competition in your marketplace means your brand must differentiate with irrefutable value. Tourism New Zealand knew this when it came to Voice to develop a strategy to separate the New Zealand tourist experience from its many competitors. From this strategy, 100% Pure New Zealand was born and continues to draw tourists worldwide to New Zealand’s clean, green shores. Other examples of deep research into competitive context include Property Brokers, TIMG, Post Haste, Te Pou, Saint Kentigern, Shotover Jet, New Zealand Couriers and MEO Air.
Customer-centric brands win.
From the outset, your brand must deeply understand your target audience and what drives their decision-making and perceptions. You must understand how your target audience segment, what each segment wants and how your brand must speak to them. Vodafone AU/NZ understood this many years ago when we helped them rebrand from Bell South to Vodafone. Insights spoke of an opportunity to appeal to a young-minded audience, to be fun, hip and offer an alternative to the existing, stayed corporate brands. Groovy Vodafone AU/NZ was born and quickly became the challenger brand on both sides of the Tasman. Other examples where customer-centricity was important is Shotover Jet, Southern Discoveries, Pass the Parcel, Hihuhu and Southern Cross.
A well-differentiated brand offer.
Your offer to the market and the words and visuals you use to articulate it have everything to do with your customers’ perception of you. Ensuring your target customers want what you offer and its differentiated from your competitors is the crucial insight your brand needs to succeed. Armed with deep market insight Shotover Jet knew they had to be the top-of-mind jet boat experience in Queenstown and be one of only three experiences the average tourist would buy. The research found they needed to widen their appeal to include families and communicate their differentiation point – access to Shotover Canyon. Voice helped the client rack and stack their offering in a way that customers understood and engaged with. Other examples of our work where a well-differentiated brand offering was key include Aunt Jeans, New Zealand Couriers, OJI Fibre Solutions, Freightways Group, Endless Metals, KiwiSo, NOW Couriers, OneFortyOne, Farmers and MEO Air.
Engaging your people.
Your people are the powerhouse behind your customer experience and brand behaviour. If your team are to understand who they work for and how they must show up, a strong vision and a set of values are needed to drive behaviour. Guide your culture to fulfil a market position that creates engagement and tactics for better customer experience. The New Zealand Real Estate Authority (REA) knew this when a broader mandate meant newer responsibilities and a need to reengage their people with a revised set of organisational values. Internal engagement was also crucial to Vodafone, Air New Zealand, AMP, Frucor Suntory, Southern Cross, The Commerce Commission, Financial Markets Authority and Saint Kentigern projects.
Powerful insight and analysis
Large organisations need robust processes run by people who know what they are doing. For Saint Kentigern we led an extensive and comprehensive global discovery process. Interviewees included senior exec and board, faculty, students, parents, prospective parents and partners. The qualitative insights from this process provided a clear context that guided brand framework development.