Better Research

Research Icon

We know marketing. It’s what we do.

But do we know everything there is to know about you, your business, and your audience? Nope. And if you’re 100% honest, neither do you—and that’s okay. It’s hard to read the label from inside the jar. So we use a combination of methods to help gain an understanding of your audience, your competition, your opportunities, and your blind spots. It’s all out there. We just have to do a little digging.

We’re looking for the truth, and when we find it, we can make a plan to act on it. Which is a whole lot better than thinking you know the truth and finding out the hard way that you didn’t. If you want to shift a perception or change a behavior, you first have to know that it exists. So we gather data (both quantitative and qualitative) and distill it into truths. Then we can act with confidence to solve your toughest business problems.

Want better research? Let’s Talk.


Do we have to do research first?

Nope. You also don’t have to eat your vegetables, but we would highly recommend that you do. Marketing, sales, and recruitment are all two-way conversations. To communicate with and influence others, you first have to know their needs, biases, behaviors, and motivations. Sometimes you even need to know what words they like and don’t like! The surest way to make informed decisions is to be informed by those who will ultimately make the decisions: those who work for you, buy from you, hire you, or refer you (or do any one of those things with a competitor instead). Want to know what you don’t know? Ask your customers.

P.S. If you already have current research, you get a special research badge and move ahead two steps! We’ll spend some time reviewing what you have and let you know if we see any gaps or recommend anything more.

What kind of research does Willow do?

Based on the unique needs of your organization and your brand, we conduct qualitative and quantitative web-based surveys, in-depth interviews, focus groups, and creative testing. Balance is important, and so is relevance. So we adhere to statistically relevant sample size guidelines and help determine sample sizes and segments at the onset.

Now that we have data, what’s next?

Information without insight is meaningless. So every playback or gap analysis we conduct is distilled into key insights and then turned into action items, organized by priority. And since we believe in keeping the information pure, it’s yours to keep. You get all cross tabulations, original and verbatim from open-ended responses, transcripts, videos, recordings, etc.

How often should we be doing research?

This varies according to organizations and types of research. Some companies plan research like an annual checkup. Staying ahead of the curve helps them to be proactive. Analytics are a good example of ongoing research. You’re continually measuring and adjusting according to the results. Others only do research when they’re rolling out a new program or product, or when they think there may be a problem. When you’re trying to change behaviors, it often starts with changing beliefs or perceptions. It’s not like sales numbers, where you can pull the tape at the end of the day. We think it’s a good idea, especially in the case of a rebrand, to check back with your audience to see if the needle is moving. It doesn’t happen overnight, but when it happens, you don’t want to miss it.