The Insights Blog

Drive better work (and win more business) with strategic insights

Drive better work (and win more business) with strategic insights

Drive better work (and win more business) with strategic insights

The best campaigns and the biggest account wins often are driven by the best strategic insights. This is a simple truth we see day in and day out in our work with agencies and clients. Unfortunately, compelling insights are rare these days, and many agency and client teams are ill-prepared to develop the insights that can lead to great work, client wins, business results and exceptional careers.

That is a shame.

And it doesn’t have to be a shame. You don’t need to be a genius to develop compelling insights. You simply need to know how.

There are folks in the industry that are really adept at uncovering or developing insights that stop us in our tracks and set the stge for great creative, big client wins, brand growth and success.

And because of this fabulous work, many of us have our favorite insight stories.

Under Armour

Under Armour & the 2016 Olympics: Under Armour couldn’t show spokesperson Michael Phelps winning medals or appearing in Olympic competition. So Droga5 found a deep truth: every moment Michael Phelps spent in the spotlight was the result of months of grueling work. They turned that analysis into a compelling insight, “an athelete’s greatness is fueled by their sacrifices”. This insight turned into amazing work: “It’s what you do in the dark that puts you in the light”. What does that kind of insight fueled work deliver? 8.5 billion earned media impressions, 10 million Youtube views, the second most shared Olympics spot of 2016 (without any connection to the Olympics), and a 20% lift in brand consideration while the Official Olympic Sponsor (Nike) grew consideration by 1%.

Let’s not forget the America Runs on Dunkin’ campaign. This never happens without the core insight that to Dunkin customers, coffee is fuel.

I could go on and on, like Corona’s original “relaxed and unpretentious” insight driving Find Your Beach, or “the absence of milk is motivating” driving GS&P’s Got Milk campaign.

You don’t have to work at Goodby or Droga5 to do this. You need some knowledge and a process.

The first part of that knowledge is knowing what an insight is, and how it is different from data or analysis. A data point is not an insight. It’s data. It’s facts and observations that we can all agree upon. If I had a dollar for every time I heard someone reference a fact as an insight, I may not be writing this blog. I’d have found a beach and had an entire case of Corona in hand.

Analysis of data is also not an insight. Analysis is interpretation. It’s what you think about the data. This is very important work. Analsysis helps us solve business problems and it’s the fuel that helps prepare us for much higher level thinking, like insight work. But it is not insight.

Insight is something else. It is based on judgement and often has emotion and tension. Insights can be derived from your target audience, brand, competition, culture or a combination of factors.

What are your favorite insights and what work did they help birth? How do you identify strategic insights that can drive that kind of success?

Join us in Denver on June 24 & 25 and you’ll learn a repeatable process to develop meaningful insights. Agencies that have used this approach have earned nearly $200 million in new AGI as a result of these skills. Elevate your strategic thinking and develop insights that differentiate your work, all while learning a proven framework that you can teach everyone on your team to deploy. Register here while space is available.

You’ll learn a proven strategic framework that can be taught to everyone in your company or agency.

Led by Mercer Island Group consultants Robin and Steve Boehler, you will learn how to develop actionable strategy, where to look for insights, and how to consistently succeed with real business challenges from real clients. This hands-on workshop is perfect for marketers, agency owners, leadership teams, and business development directors who are charged with growing their companies.

With this workshop, you’ll gain a competitive edge and a repeatable process to develop deep strategic insights that drive better tactics and win more new business. Get ahead of the competition with the Strategic Insights Workshop (find out more and register here)!

Steve Boehler, founder, and partner at Mercer Island Group has led consulting teams on behalf of clients as diverse as Zillow Group, Microsoft, UScellular, Nintendo, Ulta Beauty, Stop & Shop, Qualcomm, Brooks Running, and numerous others. He founded MIG after serving as a division president in a Fortune 100 when he was only 32. Earlier in his career, Steve Boehler cut his teeth with a decade in Brand Management at Procter & Gamble, leading brands like Tide, Pringles, and Jif.