I started as a journalist, writing features for Rolling Stone, Wired, Harper’s and more. The job involved entering a world totally. Whether that was DJ's in 1990's Alphabet City for Wired, or the 2014 Thailand coup d’etat which I covered for Newsweek, the process remains the same: dive in and find the story.
Working with the best editors in the business taught me to justify viewpointS with facts. I learned how to effectively portray a landscape, and bring the voices within it to life. Most importantly, I learned how to tell the story. These same skills, applied through the lens of my branding experience, inform my approach to Strategy Research.
My approach stresses humanity over data, and story over numbers. Brands and products have histories. Marketplaces have values, aspirations, and codes. Consumers have dialogue and relationships. My process involves understanding this through news items, brand publications and blogs, analysis of competitor positioning, consideration of larger social issues, and detailed exploration through personal social media posts and threads from the chosen demographic. From this research emerges key insights. These insights reveal the story lines prevalent in your marketplace. Understanding these story lines provides the knowledge that suggests effective strategy.
When paired with numbers and projections from data driven market research, the result is a rich understanding of both the emotions and economics driving your market.
My work in Strategy Research Remains under NDA, but I am happy to provide references upon request.