Getting Senior Managers close to their Customers

We had already been working with the client’s International Task Force exploring the global future of Value Brands, when the desire to get beyond the presentations and get down and dirty with some customers emerged.

They saw us as their ideal partner for this exercise because we have the hands on experience with both senior managers and customers to successfully bridge the gap between them. The key was to create an experience that the members of the Task Force found challenging but enjoyable and critically, actually contributed something to their future thinking. We were given a 24-hour slot in the next quarter’s agenda and asked to make it happen.

Working round issues such as English not being the first language of many of the participants, we came up with a varied programme of customer interactions that had the Task Force members undertaking accompanied shops and in-home ethnographic interviews before coming together for an evening of communal ‘Speed Dating’, where they could quiz all the customers taking part.

The Workshop session the next morning generated intense discussion about how ‘Value Brands’ worked for these customers and it was evident that some of the accepted learning was now being challenged. The result was that two new work streams were started within the group and over the next 12 months these were used to refine the marketing strategy for the ‘Value Brand’ portfolio.