After a successful pitch to Harris Interactive about our design thinking and brand strategy consultancy services, they were excited to see us put our skills and abilities to work on some of their marketing outputs. Harris Interactive was already aware of our market research expertise especially when it comes to rethinking research deliverables, so they were keen to try out our consulting and marketing skills. Originally, they had developed an idea for a video output which they felt worked great for their companies needs; we explained to them that to experience the benefits of our Brand Consulting, that they would be better to undergo a few consultancy sessions where we will help them to utilise design thinking process to develop a much more effective output via analysing their current brand positioning, brand story, research tools and positioning within the overall Market research industry and then develop an output according to our findings.
Our goals were to develop a marketing output for Harris Interactive research promoting their company and research tools, whilst helping them expand their understanding of not only creative / design thinking, but also how they perceived their own brand and working process through the creative thinking process. From the very start, we made sure the clients understood that this project would be used as an introduction to the creative thinking techniques developed by Guru, with the aim of purposefully drawing the client out of their comfort zone, which in turn discourages them falling into old habits of thinking and to become open to learning design thinking and creative process.
Stage one: Phase one
Brand analysis (pre-session questionnaire)
Before the first session had begun we tasked the client with some pre-session tasks, via a questionnaire to complete about their brands' history, drivers, industry position, research tools, working process, and the USP within their field. Profiling their client, their needs and at what keeps their returning customers coming back.
Collecting such information was essential for two reasons: One, so that we had a clear idea of not only where Harris Interactive currently stood within the market research industry and to ensure we had a wealth of information about the brand as a starting point to drill down into. But more importantly, to help shift the clients' perspective of their own company to a different perspective in order to have a wider viewpoint when considering the brand as a whole, past, present, and future. Helping them to identify and develop their brand’s creative core, then using this core (their reason for existing) as the directional north star point of which all other things can be referenced against.
Stage Two: Phase one
Categorise information about Harris Interactive: their brand history, what separates them from their competitors
Identified department/tools to feature within their marketing output what type out medium to use
Further development of gathered data to translate elements into aspects of the output story
Clarify the developed story - start, middle, and end. Ensuring that all of the wider brand story touchpoints are included within the concept
With our guidance the bone of a script was quickly created, giving Harris time to consider how to best fill out the rest of the script (with added Guru guidance and consultancy)
Having developed solid foundations for a video and infographic output during stage one through a clear story about their communities online research tools, with elements which tie into their wider company brand messaging.
This meant that going into stage two, the client had a better jump-off point for the creative thinking and visual idea-generating process. We guided them through the visual translation process, going through each part of the script, sketching out ideas of how to best visually represent the script whilst making sure we stuck to the creative core of their brand - loosely developing visual possibilities, never delving too deep into finer details (that would be handled later on by Guru’s creative team), focusing on what each scene message should feature with general look and feel of each scene outlined using sticky pads so that they can be moved around and rearranged to develop different visual story options. This helped the client to visualise the story better, moving pieces around like a puzzle until it was felt we had developed a story and visual outline that everyone was happy with.
Design and production
With the foundation set for the video and infographic, we ended the consultancy session with a solid production timeline along with outlined responsibilities on both sides ensuring that the project creation process would run as smoothly as the consultation process. Providing content writing support for sections Harris Interactive were tasked with developing. This meant when it came to the production and creation stage of this project, the client already knew exactly what they would be getting and could swiftly okay storyboard and early infographic visuals with minor changes. This meant that we were able to focus on the production side of things with very little client ‘back and forth’, which lead to a swift output.
(S Qureshi, Head of Online Communities)
“I work with MCG to really help promote and progress the design thinking at Harris Interactive, with particular focus on the communities solution. Slim and his team really helped to produce some great collateral, they also helped to guide the team through this first time process and teach us to refine and iterate. It was a steep learning curve with lot's of tips to help us with future projects.”