Developing brand strategies across borders

Date of publication: June 15, 1991

Author: Judie Lannon


Two of the many themes that have dominated ESOMAR's thinking in recent years provide the text of this paper. The first is the necessity of absorbing the lessons of marketing and developing research products and brands to add value to the analysis and interpretation of expensively collected data in order to raise both the status and profits of a largely undervalued industry. The second theme stems from the first and that is that research must increasingly be directly useful in the conduct of commercial activities. The European Single Market and the consequent emergence of the need for European (if not global) brands provides a perfect opportunity for research professionals to demonstrate both innovation and utility. Although I am deeply suspicious of the over zealous pursuit of branding to research 'products' - a subject I would like to develop in more detail in another paper - I am obviously wholeheartedly in favour of research that meets users' needs and is developed from the user's perspective rather than the producer's perspective. We are entering a period when for the first time European brands will be systematically planned, drawing on the same sorts of disciplines with which we have planned national brands. J. Walter Thompson pioneered an advertising planning philosophy, the basic concepts of which are now, in one form or another, a part of most multinational agencies' thinking, whether they acknowledge the origins or not. Therefore it is appropriate to begin a dialogue with research suppliers looking at the kinds of research products being produced in terms of their utility in the development of European brands. This paper - or, more accurately, 'think piece' - opens this dialogue by looking at consumer segmentations

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