The following are notes that I took live while Tom de Ruyck (Head of Research Communities, InSites Consulting, Belgium) presented at MRIA Net Gain 8.0. There might be typos in the posting.
This posting includes a video clip with Tom de Ruyck summarizing his presentation.
Objective: To show that consumers have the power to re-shape a business.
Conversations: Making or Breaking Brands
- You no longer have control what is said about your brand online.
- Fans: Want to have a say in the future of ‘their’ brands.
What is happening in the business world:
- Harder (more competitive)
- faster (companies that emerge that were not expected)
- better (consumers want more)
- stronger (company needs to be stronger to survive)
Being open (listening to the consumer) and agile (being able to move quickly) has become key for companies.
Average CEO thinks: “Oh, no! This is soo scarry.”
Companies say they are having two way dialogues, but reality is one-way communication.
Reality = one shot actions and organized and silos
One of clients has a timeline of 18 months to get a new product to market, as many stakeholders are involved with each step of the process.
We are missing out on the biggest opportunity ever! If you are agile and open, you will gain a competitive advantage.
Q: Who is going to help companies become open and agile? Will it be consultants and advisors?
A: Your customers are probably your best consultants.
Example: Pim’s — speaker has liked the cookie since he was 3, so who knows most about the cookie, the brand manager or people like the speaker. Especially when the average brand manager is in their position for two years. Would work well if consumers had help marketing people do a good job.
Extra-ordinary engagement — loyal customers are “emotional stakeholders”, who really want to help. Example Ben & Jerry’s, had a community of extreme fans. Challenge: the community became very angry when they felt the brand did something wrong. Good knowledge to have because the consumers are always right.
Say ‘hi’ to your consumer consulting board.
- closed (communication only), larger community, taken on for a longer time period, online
- with more people you can have a clash of communities.
- with more time you can talk with consumers when you are coming up with a product or service.
Q: If you have a community are you open and agile?
A: It only makes you more open and agile if you change your processes, might be used only in the same way that typical market research is.
- has decided they want to be known as a “design brand” so they can charge a premium for it
- design refers both to packaging and environment in which it is consumed — designed the “club of the future” — 1,000 members in total, from 10 countries for one year and then build a pop-up club in Milan
- had a cross-departmental team who was on-board from the start to have this take place quickly
- asked them for ideas into the best club experience
OK Let’s make it happen
- have the right people on board — people who are into the brands — don’t want to have representation because you want people who are interesting and interested in what you are doing.
- how many members do you need? A: There is a saturation point, after about 30 responses to a question you know everything that is needed to know.
- for a short-term community 50 is enough, for a long-term community 150 is enough, beyond that it is harder for moderator to effectively guide community.
Creating engagement: not money, it is input, and every so often a small gift
Turned question into a challenge to see which city would be judged the “coolest” on MTV, based on their submission.
Making people think more emotionally or more creative.
Chiquita wanted to launch smoothie offering in Latin American market, felt it would be a hit since it was a convenient way to eat fruit.
- Communities of those who ate fruit and those who did not. In first week community came up for reasons why/why not to eat fruit. In second week asked those who ate fruit not too, and those who didn’t provided a basket of fruit.
- With this changes in place asked people to use a diary to record the changes in their mindset from the difference in lifestyle.
- In third week each group tried to convince the other to change their lifestyle, came up with the 20 best benefits identified in first week
Wanted to create research on Voice Holland to see how to monetize the show more. Worked with Facebook to create a community of 150 on the Voice Holland’s fan page.
Campbell’s “Come Dine With Me” community in Australia, with a professional researcher as the community moderator.
Crowd-Interpretation — 16 year old girls living in New York City. Used them to explain the data that InSites Consulting did not understand. Turned the job of a market researcher into a game. Result: between 20-40% more insights than usual.
- Phillips in China, trying to discover how well a medical product helping in sleep would do.
- Had 50 people in group, an additional 10 just observing. After three weeks asked of those 10 to critique the analysis.
- Some of the critiques they used were important, the product launch would have been a disaster if they were not discovered.