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Expertise & Examples of Our Work

Coommunications and Brand Strategy Research
 
COMMUNICATIONS AND BRAND STRATEGY RESEARCH

WIT Consulting identifies your organization or brand’s strengths and weaknesses, finds what sets you apart, pinpoints your target audience, and help you focus your positioning. We can help you develop marketing and communications strategies that move the needle by deeply connecting with stakeholders.

EXAMPLES OF WIT CONSULTING'S WORK

Discovering How to Motivate Wellness Behaviors

REQUEST: A leading management consulting firm needed to understand, on behalf of their healthcare client, the motivations that keep consumers engaged in wellness and active in the wellness marketplace.

 

RESULTS: Using one-on-one in-depth interviews, we examined the current behaviors of wellness-involved consumers and major turning points in their wellness journey. Through this process, we were able to identify the range of positive influences that help someone reach their goals and negative influences that hinder their success. Our qualitative research informed the development of consumer archetypes in the wellness category and the design of a website to help people find wellness solutions that work for them.

Determining How to Position a Global Nonprofit for Sustained Giving

REQUEST: A global nonprofit had no difficulty raising money for high-profile emergencies. However, it needed to make a case for sustained giving to its local chapters.

 

RESULTS: We conducted focus groups among donors in key markets to explore their perceptions of the organization and its value to the local community, as well as to gauge reactions to potential cases for support. Our research revealed that the charity needed to continue to leverage the brand’s powerful perceptual strengths but infuse that identity with local stories, local volunteers, and local outcomes.

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COMMUNICATIONS TESTING

From evaluating early stage concepts and value proposition statements to testing near-final messaging and advertising, we help you learn what’s working and what’s not. We explore how your target audience responds to your communications –– and why. You'll learn their hot buttons and what turns them off, what’s clear, and what’s confusing. Ultimately, we help you create messages that resonate deeply with your audience.

EXAMPLES OF WIT CONSULTING'S WORK

Testing Advertising to Influence Attitudes About Global Warming

REQUEST: A preeminent public service advertising group and a major nonprofit environmental organization wanted to gauge the motivating power of rough advertising executions that were created to influence attitudes towards global warming and individual responsibility. 

 

RESULTS: Through focus groups, we identified a fine line between motivating and discouraging the general public toward changing their behavior. Our research led to the development of an emotionally-engaging campaign that conveyed urgency — but that there is also still time to act.

Evaluating New Product Concepts to Learn What Hot Buttons Motivate Purchase

REQUEST: A major food manufacturer wanted to know which new product concepts resonated with its target audience for the launch of a line of organic chocolates. They also wanted to know why.


RESULTS: Our research provided insight into the mindset of the organic chocolate consumer — what draws them to the category, the triggers that motivate their interest, and the psychological pull of an organic label. Our client used this guidance to narrow down and refine their concepts for further product development.

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SOCIAL ISSUE AND PUBLIC POLICY RESEARCH

Advocacy organizations succeed by understanding the constituencies they want to influence and what makes them look at an issue in a different way. We help you identify the underlying attitudes and beliefs that shape people’s behaviors and what inspires them to think differently, leading to powerful and successful strategies for communications and issue management.

EXAMPLES OF WIT CONSULTING'S WORK

 

 

 

 

 

Discovering How to Steer People towards Smart Financial Decision-Making

REQUEST: A leading nonprofit dedicated to educating the public on smart financial decision-making needed to motivate people to take more responsibility for their financial health.

 

RESULTS: In-depth interviews with adults representing different socio-economic groups and ages revealed a continuum of attitudes and values that drive a wide variety of behaviors. We developed psychographic archetypes to explain these differences and illuminate each type’s orientation to financial literacy, their positive vs. self-defeating beliefs, and potential strategies for shifting behavior among those most in need of support.  

Understanding Opinions on Technology Deterring Drunk Driving

REQUEST: A nonprofit was interested in understanding public opinion about technological innovations that could deter drunk driving.  

 

RESULTS: We conducted focus groups to explore what the public knows about various methods of preventing drunk driving and who should be required to use them. Our research identified what people are willing to accept as being mandatory for the general public — versus drunk driving offenders. In addition, the research surfaced a range of perceived concerns about the devices that could impact safety, effectiveness, and ultimately acceptance. 

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CASE STUDIES

 

 

 

 

 

 
LIFESTAGE AND GENERATION RESEARCH

Lifestage is a powerful determinant of how we act. Getting our first job, having a child, retiring, and other major events affect our self-image, values, views, and priorities. Throughout life, we change how we spend our time, what we buy, and what we desire.

 

The generation that we were born into also influences us throughout our lives and powerfully connects us to others our age. We are rooted — consciously and subconsciously — to the norms and values that shaped our childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. 

 

We help our clients understand these powerful forces to position their messages, products, and services. Think of us when you need to determine how shifting generational values could influence your business, learn how to take advantage of the transformational shifts connected with lifestage, or discover how to position your brand to resonate with consumers from every generation and across the life course. 

EXAMPLES OF WIT CONSULTING'S WORK

 

 

 

 

 

Discovering How Childbirth Influences the Purchasing Decisions of New Moms

REQUEST: A leading parents' magazine wanted advertisers to understand that the birth of a first child influences a new mom's buying decision in many parts of her life.

 

RESULTS: Our extended ethnographic research, using in-depth interviews, diaries, and a videotaped day with new moms, found that a woman is fundamentally transformed during the time she is pregnant with her first child. Her new buying patterns span categories from cars and financial services to personal care products and home design. Advertisers found the results compelling, leading to an increase in new category advertisers and ad sales for the magazine.

Revealing How Generational Differences Influence Home Choices

REQUEST: A home and garden company wanted to know the difference between the needs of Gen X as new homeowners and Baby Boomers. 

 

RESULTS: Using creative projective techniques within the context of focus groups, WIT Consulting helped the company learn where generations see eye-to-eye and where they differ. This research helped our client develop their long-term strategic plan, incorporating the needs of a new generation.

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AGING & LIFESTYLE 
AGING & LIFESTYLE 

WIT reveals the powerful ways that lifestyle and age define specific needs and desires. We can help you identify new opportunties, understand how shifting generational values impact your brand, and learn how to take advantage of transformational lifestyle shifts. We can also help you position your brand to resonate with older adults.

WIT reveals the powerful ways that lifestyle and age define specific needs and desires. We can help you identify new opportunties, understand how shifting generational values impact your brand, and learn how to take advantage of transformational lifestyle shifts. We can also help you position your brand to resonate with older adults.

WIT reveals the powerful ways that lifestyle and age define specific needs and desires. We can help you identify new opportunties, understand how shifting generational values impact your brand, and learn how to take advantage of transformational lifestyle shifts. We can also help you position your brand to resonate with older adults.

WIT reveals the powerful ways that lifestyle and age define specific needs and desires. We can help you identify new opportunties, understand how shifting generational values impact your brand, and learn how to take advantage of transformational lifestyle shifts. We can also help you position your brand to resonate with older adults.

AGING & LIFESTYLE 
AGING & LIFESTYLE 

WIT reveals the powerful ways that lifestyle and age define specific needs and desires. We can help you identify new opportunties, understand how shifting generational values impact your brand, and learn how to take advantage of transformational lifestyle shifts. We can also help you position your brand to resonate with older adults.

WIT reveals the powerful ways that lifestyle and age define specific needs and desires. We can help you identify new opportunties, understand how shifting generational values impact your brand, and learn how to take advantage of transformational lifestyle shifts. We can also help you position your brand to resonate with older adults.

OLDER ADULTS AND AN AGING SOCIETY RESEARCH

In 2010, an estimated 524 million people worlwide were aged 65 or older. By 2050, that number is expected to nearly triple to about 1.5 billion. With a society still designed around the needs of a younger population, we’re not prepared for this demographic transition. From housing to health care to transportation to financial security, older adults and caregivers must navigate a suboptimal set of options.

 

Change is underway and we’re here to help you find the landmarks — deep insights into what matters as people age, how they make choices, how they’re alike, and how they’re different. We understand older adults and know which questions to ask.

 

CASE STUDIES

 

 

 

 

 

Refining the Pre-Retiree Audience for Precise Targeting

REQUEST: A financial services firm wanted to create products and services targeted to pre-retirees.

 

RESULTS: In-depth focus group explorations of the hopes, fears and dreams of pre-retirees led to the need for further segmentation studies. This resulted in being able to exactly define the audience and led to precisely targeted messaging. 

Differentiating Gen X & Baby Boomer Needs

REQUEST: A home and garden company wanted to know the difference between the needs of Gen X, who were just becoming homeowners, and baby boomers. 

 

RESULTS: Through focus groups with Gen X and baby boomers, we helped the company understand the differences in their needs, attitudes and values in relationship to home and garden, and also defined the similarities that transcend generations.

Revealing a New, Expanded Target Market

REQUEST: A financial services firm launching services targeted to older adults wanted to identify its target market and determine which benefits to emphasize.

 

RESULTS: Through focus groups, we learned that the target market was younger than our client anticipated, leading to a much larger market with far more profit potential.

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CASE STUDIES

 

 

 

 

 

HIGHER EDUCATION: ALUMNI ENGAGEMENT AND FUNDRAISING RESEARCH

Increasingly dependent on donations to offset expenses, build endowments, fund scholarships and contribute in other ways to the sustainability of the school’s future, many colleges and universities are seeking to reconnect with their alumni – or better yet, never let them go.

 

We help our higher education clients make and nurture these connections. We identify what they value most about their alma mater and what drives favorable feelings. We test different cases for giving to highlight the themes, ideas, words and phrases that move the needle on their likelihood to give. And our independent research gives us an extra layer of insight into generational differences nationwide.

CASE STUDIES

 

 

 

 

 

HIGHER EDUCATION: ALUMNI ENGAGEMENT AND FUNDRAISING RESEARCH

Refining the Pre-Retiree Audience for Precise Targeting

REQUEST: A financial services firm wanted to create products and services targeted to pre-retirees.

 

RESULTS: In-depth focus group explorations of the hopes, fears and dreams of pre-retirees led to the need for further segmentation studies. This resulted in being able to exactly define the audience and led to precisely targeted messaging. 

Differentiating Gen X & Baby Boomer Needs

REQUEST: A home and garden company wanted to know the difference between the needs of Gen X, who were just becoming homeowners, and baby boomers. 

 

RESULTS: Through focus groups with Gen X and baby boomers, we helped the company understand the differences in their needs, attitudes and values in relationship to home and garden, and also defined the similarities that transcend generations.

Revealing a New, Expanded Target Market

REQUEST: A financial services firm launching services targeted to older adults wanted to identify its target market and determine which benefits to emphasize.

 

RESULTS: Through focus groups, we learned that the target market was younger than our client anticipated, leading to a much larger market with far more profit potential.

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CASE STUDIES

 

 

 

 

 

Understanding The Retirement Experience on a Deeply Emotional Level

REQUEST: A major retirement provider wanted to understand how people experienced retirement at a deeply emotional level, from the point at which they are seriously considering retirement to when they actually retire and a few years beyond.

 

RESULTS: After using focus groups to develop hypotheses, we conducted ethnographic research to unearth the range of ways people navigate this life stage. As a result, our client developed a new understanding of the hierarchy of emotional end-benefits and changes in self-identity that define retirement, each leading to potential areas of new product and service support and intervention.

Defining and Reaching Brain Health Audiences

REQUEST:  A pioneering company in brain health needed to identify their optimal target market among segments of the older adult population, younger adults and caregivers. They also needed to learn how to communicate product benefits in a new category in a way that resonated with their audiences. 

RESULTS: We conducted extensive one-on-one interviews among older adults at risk for cognitive decline, which required a sensitive interviewing style and the ability to elicit openness and candor. Focus groups among younger adults and caregivers further helped us define our client's target market and gain insights. Our findings helped the company address deep emotional end-benefits in its marketing, which established it as a lead player in the brain health category.

REQUEST: A new company launching longevity-oriented financial services wanted to identify their best target market and find out which benefits to emphasize in product development and marketing. 

 

RESULTS: Our qualitative research including probing how people felt about outliving their assets. The results suggested that the target market was significantly younger than anticipated, steering the company towards a potentially broader market.

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HIGHER EDUCATION: ALUMNI ENGAGEMENT AND FUNDRAISING RESEARCH

Understanding The Retirement Experience on a Deeply Emotional Level

REQUEST: A major retirement provider wanted to understand how people experienced retirement at a deeply emotional level, from the point at which they are seriously considering retirement to when they actually retire and a few years beyond.

 

RESULTS: After using focus groups to develop hypotheses, we conducted ethnographic research to unearth the range of ways people navigate this life stage. As a result, our client developed a new understanding of the hierarchy of emotional end-benefits and changes in self-identity that define retirement, each leading to potential areas of new product and service support and intervention.

Defining and Reaching Brain Health Audiences

REQUEST:  A pioneering company in brain health needed to identify their optimal target market among segments of the older adult population, younger adults and caregivers. They also needed to learn how to communicate product benefits in a new category in a way that resonated with their audiences. 

RESULTS: We conducted extensive one-on-one interviews among older adults at risk for cognitive decline, which required a sensitive interviewing style and the ability to elicit openness and candor. Focus groups among younger adults and caregivers further helped us define our client's target market and gain insights. Our findings helped the company address deep emotional end-benefits in its marketing, which established it as a lead player in the brain health category.

REQUEST: A new company launching longevity-oriented financial services wanted to identify their best target market and find out which benefits to emphasize in product development and marketing. 

 

RESULTS: Our qualitative research including probing how people felt about outliving their assets. The results suggested that the target market was significantly younger than anticipated, steering the company towards a potentially broader market.

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Understanding How to Support Customers as They Navigate Retirement

REQUEST: A major retirement plan provider wanted to understand how people experience retirement in every way – from how they see themselves and their future to their deepest needs and concerns. 

 

RESULTS: We used focus groups to develop hypotheses and then conducted ethnographic research to unearth the range of ways people navigate this life stage. As a result, our client gained new insight into what makes for a smooth or challenging retirement experience, each leading to potential areas of new product and service support and intervention.

Defining and Reaching Brain Health Audiences

REQUEST:  A pioneering company in brain health needed to identify their optimal target market among segments of the older adult population, as well as explore interest among younger adults and caregivers. They also needed to learn how to communicate product benefits in a completely new category.

RESULTS: We conducted extensive one-on-one interviews among older adults at risk for cognitive decline, which required a sensitive interviewing style and the ability to elicit openness and candor. Focus groups among younger adults and caregivers further helped us define our client's target market and gain valuable insights. Our findings helped the company establish a leading position in the emerging brain health category.

REQUEST: A new company launching longevity-oriented financial services wanted to identify their best target market and find out which benefits to emphasize in product development and marketing. 

 

RESULTS: Our qualitative research explored how people felt about outliving their assets and who felt at risk and why. The results suggested that the target market was significantly younger than anticipated, steering the company towards a potentially broader market.

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With increasing dependence on donations to offset expenses, build endowments, fund scholarships, and contribute in other ways to the sustainability of the school’s future, many colleges and universities are seeking to reconnect with their alumni — or better yet, never let them go.

 

We help our higher education clients make and nurture these connections. Identify what they value most about their alma mater and what drives favorable feelings. Test different cases for giving to highlight the themes, ideas, and words that increase people's likelihood to donate. Our independent research gives us an extra layer of insight into generational differences that influence donation decisions.

Understanding The Retirement Experience on a Deeply Emotional Level

REQUEST: A major retirement provider wanted to understand how people experienced retirement at a deeply emotional level, from the point at which they are seriously considering retirement to when they actually retire and a few years beyond.

 

RESULTS: After using focus groups to develop hypotheses, we conducted ethnographic research to unearth the range of ways people navigate this life stage. As a result, our client developed a new understanding of the hierarchy of emotional end-benefits and changes in self-identity that define retirement, each leading to potential areas of new product and service support and intervention.

Defining and Reaching Brain Health Audiences

REQUEST:  A pioneering company in brain health needed to identify their optimal target market among segments of the older adult population, younger adults and caregivers. They also needed to learn how to communicate product benefits in a new category in a way that resonated with their audiences. 

RESULTS: We conducted extensive one-on-one interviews among older adults at risk for cognitive decline, which required a sensitive interviewing style and the ability to elicit openness and candor. Focus groups among younger adults and caregivers further helped us define our client's target market and gain insights. Our findings helped the company address deep emotional end-benefits in its marketing, which established it as a lead player in the brain health category.

REQUEST: A new company launching longevity-oriented financial services wanted to identify their best target market and find out which benefits to emphasize in product development and marketing. 

 

RESULTS: Our qualitative research including probing how people felt about outliving their assets. The results suggested that the target market was significantly younger than anticipated, steering the company towards a potentially broader market.

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EXAMPLES OF WIT CONSULTING'S WORK

 

 

 

 

 

Understanding How to Support Customers as They Navigate Retirement

REQUEST: A major retirement plan provider wanted to understand how people experience retirement in every way — from how they see themselves and their future to their deepest needs and concerns. 

 

RESULTS: We used focus groups to develop hypotheses and then conducted ethnographic research to unearth the range of ways people navigate this life stage. As a result, our client gained new insight into what makes for a smooth or challenging retirement experience, each leading to potential areas of new product and service support and intervention.

Defining and Reaching Brain Health Audiences

REQUEST:  A pioneering company in brain health needed to identify their optimal target market among segments of the older adult population, as well as explore interest among younger adults and caregivers. They also needed to learn how to communicate product benefits in a completely new category.

RESULTS: We conducted extensive one-on-one interviews among older adults at risk for cognitive decline, which required a sensitive interviewing style and the ability to elicit openness and candor. Focus groups among younger adults and caregivers further helped us define our client's target market and gain valuable insights. Our findings helped the company establish a leading position in the emerging brain health category.

REQUEST: A new company launching longevity-oriented financial services wanted to identify their best target market and find out which benefits to emphasize in product development and marketing.  

 

RESULTS: Our qualitative research explored how people felt about outliving their assets and who felt at risk and why. The results suggested that the target market was significantly younger than anticipated, steering the company towards a potentially broader market.

Please reload

HIGHER EDUCATION: ALUMNI ENGAGEMENT AND FUNDRAISING RESEARCH
HIGHER EDUCATION: ALUMNI ENGAGEMENT AND FUNDRAISING RESEARCH

EXAMPLES OF WIT CONSULTING'S WORK

Learning How to Cultivate Deeper Alumni Relationships

REQUEST: A top private university wanted to learn how to more deeply engage its undergraduate alumni donor and prospect base, as well as enable the university to more clearly communicate its brand to these constituencies.

 

RESULTS: Using focus groups, in-depth interviews, and a survey among alumni, we uncovered powerful positive brand assets. But we also identified perceptual weaknesses, including a troublingly low percentage of alumni who felt that the school was on the right track. Our research showed that their alumni wanted to hear more about the school’s good works and needed to be convinced that their alma mater truly values its relationship with them.

Developing a Case for Annual Fund Support

REQUEST: A leading public university wanted to develop its annual fund into a more robust mechanism for undergraduate alumni financial support.  

 

RESULTS: We conducted focus groups, in-depth interviews, and a survey among alumni to understand if the Fund’s current case for support resonated and whether there might be a stronger message to motivate giving. The findings identified key words and phrases that can move the needle on alumni support, providing critical insight to guide alumni engagement and fundraising efforts.

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CORPORATE REPUTATION RESEARCH

The value of a good corporate reputation is priceless. It can help attract the best employees, boost the stock value, and draw in new customers, to cite just a few of the benefits. In contrast, a poor reputation can hold a company back — damaging morale, reducing profits, and weakening relationships with key stakeholders.

 

Through our research, we explore the expectations that shape corporate reputation and identify what our clients need to do to earn and maintain this essential asset.

Understanding a Polarized Reputation to Develop a PR Strategy

REQUEST: A biopharmaceutical company that wanted to achieve optimal valuation for shareholders and build equity with new constituencies needed help diagnosing areas of strength and weakness in its reputation.

 

RESULTS: Through in-depth interviews with financial and scientific/academic audiences, we assessed where the company stood on key building blocks of corporate reputation. We uncovered unexpected ambiguity about the category in which our client operated and “yellow flags” about the company’s ability to deliver, both of which had the potential to prevent the management team from reaching their goals. 

Determining How to Promote Corporate Citizenship Efforts

REQUEST:  A leading global technology company needed to know the right way to talk about their corporate citizenship efforts in local communities.

 

RESULTS: We conducted in-depth interviews followed by a survey with community leaders where the firm operated to explore their perceptions of companies doing business there. The study helped our client understand how news travels within local areas and what makes a company stand out as being socially responsible. It also illuminated how the company is currently perceived, where it was not getting the credit it deserves, and what actions it could undertake to excel in meeting community expectations.  

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EXAMPLES OF WIT CONSULTING'S WORK