The TRUE power of knowledge lies in its role of informing and guiding a brands future marketing plans. Usually knowledge is retrospective: marketers and advertisers learn from their success as well as mistakes; they seek to project the future by understanding the past. In this era of accelerated change retrospective knowledge or even knowledge of the present is no longer sufficient. Managers of brands require forward- looking knowledge as failure to look forward costs brands their lives. This paper describes an approach to qualitative research which helps companies shape the future brand and advertising landscape. It explores the definition of leading edge and argues that for any one brand there is a multiplicity of leading edge targets depending on whether design advertising product development or product usage is the subject of the study. It dispels the myth that the leading edge exists as an entity relevant across categories (a view particularly prevalent in the youth market) and looks at how each brand must define its own leading edge.