Invest the time and effort to understand the ecosystem in which your brand must thrive.

We’re wary of brand strategies and communications driven by big ideas and epiphanies. All too often, they’re based on personal tastes, flash-in-the-pan trends, or “gut instincts.” Is there a more methodical alternative driven by evidence?


What do your customers, clients, or donors think of your brand? How about your employees or fellow team members? Are all these groups of the same opinion? Would they score your offerings positively or negatively? Would they recommend your brand to others? If not, why not?

And if you think you have the answers to all those questions, what makes you so sure? Do you actually have the data in hand?

That’s what qualitative research is all about: discovering your brand’s human ecosystem in a systematic and objective way.

Little data = big insights

Don’t confuse “qualitative research” with “quantitative research” or “big data.”

Quantitative researchers analyze huge data sets that summarize the choice patterns of thousands or millions of consumers. Those statistics can be helpful when it comes to optimizing your marketing tactics—say, eking out a few more percentage points of market share or spending more wisely on advertising. 

In qualitative research, by contrast, we strive to minimize the number of research subjects—choosing just enough to adequately represent each of your key audiences. That allows us to delve more deeply, maximizing our understanding of their experiences, perceptions, and the words or actions that influence their choices.

Qualitative research, unlike quantitative, focuses on the drivers of emotions and behaviors. Qualitative insights tend to focus on leading indicators rather than trailing indicators. That’s why qualitative research is a critical input to a future-oriented brand strategy.


Our preferred methods include:

  • In-depth interviews;
  • Workshops;
  • Focus groups;
  • Brief exploratory surveys;
  • Market testing.

The insights produced by thoughtful qualitative research can be startling and, very often, game-changing.

With your support and collaboration, we can design and execute research that clarifies muddy waters, drives consensus within your organization, streamlines the strategic process, and guides better decision-making for years to come.