Insights + Ideas.
Our point of view about humans, technology, business, marketing, and a few other odds and ends
The multiple headwinds and tailwinds anticipated for 2023 will make for another year of high uncertainty. When even the WSJ’s first podcast episode of the year – titled ‘What Will the Economy Look Like in 2023?’ – ended with a range of vastly different scenarios, it’s...
Over the past couple of weeks, we have been discussing with clients their research and insights plans for 2023. The surprising observation is that, often times, there seems to be a fragmented and episodic approach to insight-generation. Also quite concerning is that a...
Last week, we highlighted the substantial erosion in trust in institutions happening in America. It is a wake-up call across the board, but particularly for brands given their bottom-two placement on the trust spectrum.
In the face of this erosion in trust, brands need to be asking themselves: Am I trusted by consumers? And how robust and resilient is that trust in times like these?
Within the S+R American Pulse, we asked consumers to tell us a brand they trust and how this brand has earned their trust. Consumer’s response to this question holds invaluable insight for brands right now.
It’s no secret; we are living in uncertain times.
Today’s news is filled with stories of inflation, interest rate increases, layoffs, (especially at tech companies), the reality of a recession, and the impact of our latest mid-term elections. That’s a lot for anybody.
At Shapiro+Raj, we decided to take a ‘pulse of the American Citizen.’ We reached out to a representative sample last week, to get their perspectives on a wide range of issues – from their economic outlook to the biggest stressors in their life. What behaviors they will continue and what will fall by the wayside.
In all of this, one theme stood out to us. Trust.
We are the largest Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) insights consultancy in the U.S. It is a badge of honor, but even more so, diversity and inclusion are at the heart of who we are.
The times we are living in today require every person and every company to stand for what is right and give everyone – no matter who they are – the opportunity to live up to their full potential. In other words, it’s not just about improving the valuation of our Fortune 500 clients, but also upping the odds of success and the dignity that comes with it for our fellow minority business owners and their employees, and for many underserved communities.
It is with this conviction that we proudly join Chicago United at the Bridge Awards Celebration tonight, honoring excellence in diversity, equity and inclusion in business, united by The Power of Inclusion.
The fourth most important principle in Agility is Point insights toward actions and outcomes. The biggest single point of failure we see is the inability of marketers to activate insights. This is mostly because of the way insights are currently framed and presented. Shapiro+Raj brand strategists work closely with researchers to clearly articulate the “now what’s” so that our clients get market-ready insights.
The third most important principle in Agility is Leveraging the right technology stack. We all know that technology is one of the biggest enablers of agility. However, with the plethora of apps and tools out there, it is very difficult to know which one is right for the job at hand, and which one will perform as billed.
The second important principle for Agility is to Squeeze the juice from your existing research. Every company has data from research done for their brands over time. Unfortunately, this data is consigned to the past and very rarely used. As teams attempt to become agile, their biggest opportunity is to leverage their existing longitudinal data because the experience of the past has the power to inform the present and inspire the future.
The first step toward agility is to frame each business problem with clarity and specificity. Then to pick methodologies that can specifically provide answers you can use to truly solve the problem. Without this clear end in mind, we have seen teams get seduced by a new tech solution or fall in love with a shiny methodology.
At Shapiro+Raj, we have evolved to become a new agency for this new normal. With a curated technology stack for agility and efficiency connected with deep social science rigor and battle-tested brand strategists. All built to spark transformative outcomes for our clients. As we have evolved, we have identified four key principles for agile research that deliver high quality outcomes with high velocity.
It’s a huge validation for us to be voted by our clients and peers as the #1 Global Strategic Insights Consultancy in GRIT 2022, a big jump from #6 just last year and beating much bigger firms like Deloitte, BCG, Accenture, and Bain. This honor is in addition to being voted as a Top 25 Most Innovative Global Market Research Agency for five years in a row! Call us with your #1 business challenge and see how the #1 Strategic Insights Consultancy can spark transformative outcomes for you.
When it comes to qualitative research impact, it takes the combination of innovative methods and skillful talent to unlock breakthrough insights. This is especially the case in research studies such as Drivers & Barriers, where it’s often not easy to deliver true breakthrough insights that go beyond the typical functional, financial, and logistic aspects.
The way the market research industry often evaluates brand communications can be problematic and, as such, may leave brands falling short of their goal of building deep, lasting brand relationships with their consumers.
At Shapiro+Raj, our unique philosophy on brand communication is inspired by the perspective that our CEO, Zain Raj, expresses in his breakthrough book Brand Rituals: How Successful Brands Bond with Customers for Life, along with our decades of experience. We know brand communications shouldn’t just deliver a message – they should forge an attachment and build a relationship.
Our diversity makes us one of those rare research companies that brings human empathy as well as a varied set of talents to every project – social scientists, data analysts, brand strategists , creatives, business operators, and technologists – so that we are better able to understand issues and find unique solutions that deliver on true business and marketing objectives. This has allowed us to build a future-forward insights consultancy. One that has led to a lot of success for us, but more importantly, has helped our clients consistently win in the marketplace.
We believe that effectiveness is about unearthing transformative insights, then inspire ideas to successfully activate these insights in the marketplace. That’s why we’re purposefully built to deliver now-what’s not just the so-what’s or the what’s.
At Shapiro+Raj, our scientific story research plans produce insights that sharpen all aspects of the scientific story – resulting in an actionable IMA refinement plan and human-centric information to set MSLs up for success (e.g., HCP areas of interest, what they may want/not want to hear, and other tips for ensuring receptivity of the data). Learn how we can help identify the narratives that can best shape your business and drive advocacy to deliver transformative outcomes.
If you want to change the odds and find a way to win not only today, but moving forward, see how the S+R PROsician™ model can help future-proof your business by future-proofing your insights!
Leveraging Legacy Data and Human-Centric Principles to Build a Single Segmentation Schema Across Oncology Brands and Markets
Uncovering that coveted segmentation sweet spot – comprehensive customer representation in a market-friendly, easy-to-adopt package – is critical to a segmentation’s success and is at the heart of Shapiro+Raj’s research approach.
Introducing S+R Guided Deliberations™, a unique methodology that we designed to reveal the biases coloring and shaping each individuals’ viewpoint and then have them work together to align on the most critical insight that drives them to arrive at a unanimous verdict.
In Marketing for Tomorrow, Not Yesterday, a #1 Amazon Sales and Marketing bestseller, Zain has scripted a guidebook full of wit and hard-won wisdom that shows how truly understanding a brand’s core customer and getting back to basics is the way to conquer complex environmental problems to survive and thrive in the Insight Economy™.
Brand Rituals: How Successful Brands Bond with Customers for Life proves how companies, and their brands can drive significant business impact by creating a bond with their most loyal customers. In this book, also a #1 Amazon marketing bestseller (for over 6-weeks), Zain discusses how it’s no longer about consumer beliefs; it’s all about customer behavior. He challenges the five existing marketing myths that no longer serve us and provides a clearly defined four-stage approach to developing a Brand Ritual™.