Thinking

Whitepapers

Whitepaper

Unleashing Innovation:
Why Future Consumer Value is the unlock to sustainable innovation success

Whitepaper

Future Consumer Value:
Why anticipating needs is the only sustainable path to growth

Whitepaper

Growth: Three Ways
Pt. 3 – Growth through Premiumisation

Whitepaper

Growth: Three Ways
Pt. 2 – How to grow through increasing Frequency

Whitepaper

Growth: Three Ways
Pt. 1 – How to grow through increasing Penetration

Whitepaper

How to Create a Winning Customer Strategy

Articles

  • Article

Demand Spaces 2.0: a tool for C-Suite decision making

The most successful projects are those where Demand Space work is used to support board-level decisions such as growth strategies, capital investments, mergers and acquisitions but they don’t always make it this far up the company. This is how to get them there.
  • Article

How to survive the creator economy

Influencers and content creators who have successfully monetised their audiences via content and merchandising, are now moving into FMCG spaces, with enviable returns. Rather that seeing this market disruption as alarming, brands should learn from the creator economy to power up their own innovation.
  • Article

The CMO perspective: The Forge’s talk at Quirk’s London 2024

We were extremely grateful to host two insightful CMOs at our Quirk’s London 2024 panel –Anthony Wells and Mark Roberts. The conversation illuminated several insights on how brand managers can drive volume and value growth. These are our key takeaways:
  • Article

Getting value from AI. Our learnings so far.

AI has arguably been the biggest conversation in marketing over the last 12 months. Much has been promised (and threatened) about its potential. We have been experimenting with it on several live client projects. It's clear that in certain circumstances it can be an incredibly potent tool, not only for creating efficiencies but for driving greater thinking too. Here are our learnings so far.
  • Article

Sustainability marketing is dead. Long live marketing in a sustainability world.

Sustainability marketing is based on a fundamentally false premise: because we are selling sustainability, people will buy sustainability. But this is not why people buy. They buy for reasons of 'what’s in it for me' - be that taste, value, utility or something else. The sooner we focus on these benefits, the faster we will sell out sustainable offerings.
  • Article

EVENT: Forging Perspectives: cutting through the hype – how will AI actually change marketing

AI is arguably the biggest conversation in marketing. We have all heard the dystopian and utopian futures promised; that we will all lose our jobs or we will never have to work again. At our most recent Forging Perspectives event, we assembled an expert panel to cut through the hype and understand how AI would ACTUALLY change marketing.
  • Article

5 questions to ask yourself before predicting the future

'Future Of' projects come in many shapes and sizes. Whilst the question is usually the same 'what is the future of X category', these types of project can be completely different depending on the outcome you are looking for. To help you decide what type of Future Of project you need we have created a set of five questions to ask yourself as you shape your next Future Of brief.
  • Article

Worth paying more for? Or worth paying for at all?

We regularly work with brands to help them develop and market products that command a premium price. However, our clients have recently started to ask us a different question. Instead of “How can we charge more for our products?”, we are hearing “How can we justify and defend our existing price point?”
  • Article

EVENT: Forging Perspectives on the climate emergency. ‘Transformative’, ‘inspirational’, ‘terrifying’.

The first in our series of events covering the big challenges affecting us. This one on the climate emergency included Rupert Read, Charmian Love, Hannah Robinson and was hosted by Simon Garnett of The Forge.
  • Article

Making trends sticky: three billion media impressions and counting

When Unilever Food Solutions approached us to create a thought-leadership report that would raise brand awareness and, by exciting chefs about the opportunities offered by plant-based foods, help to move the world towards a more sustainable future, we were delighted to be involved.
  • Article

Could this be why your attitudinal segmentation isn’t working… and is ‘reverse’ segmentation the answer? 

We sometimes get to work with insight professionals who have been disappointed by previous investments in segmentation. We have a hypothesis about why this happens and, based on this, we’ve been using an approach – reverse segmentation – that reduces the risk and maximises the return.
  • Article

How to get more from your Demand Spaces

In categories like FMCG, the uptake in demand spaces has been so near complete that clients are no longer asking how to create them but looking to understand how to get more out of them. We explore the options in the following article.
  • Article

Better addressing identity

We recently worked with an FMCG client to understand how the attitudes, motivations and needs of a specific identity group influenced behaviour. The findings were not completely as expected.
  • Article

Too Much Information, Not Enough Insight?

The rapid recent rise in online tools gives us information more quickly than ever before. So why then are we seeing more clients suffering from information-overload - more and more data with fewer and fewer insights?
  • Article

Is There Still Demand for Demand Spaces?

Used correctly, Demand Spaces can be an incredibly effective tool. In this post, we’ll discuss what they are, how they are frequently misapplied, and how we might use them in the future. 
  • Article

Fewer, Bigger, Better. Why a Strategy is Your Best Tactic

Covid-19 accelerated changes in consumer behaviour; businesses have had to deal with all of this against a backdrop of fewer resources and significant cost pressures. How well they bounceback will depend on how well they can focus on a clear strategy.
  • Article

How to Create a Customer Strategy in 8 Steps

Extracted from our whitepaper How to Create a Winning Customer Strategy, and brought to life with instructional how-to videos and examples from the world’s most famous brands, this blog sets out the 8 simple steps.
  • Article

The Big Framework For Growth

The Forge's proprietary model, The Big Framework for Growth, is used to map changes occurring in your category. It helps you to understand where the opportunities are but also flags the risks and dangers to your business. Find out how to create and deploy one in your organisation here.
  • Article

Divided by a Common Language. Why Fat Words Create Risk

When a business is working to multiple expressions of the same word it creates confusion, a lack of efficiency or a loss of effectiveness. We need to break down these broad concepts into meaningful expressions, before then going on to understand which ones are most relevant to us and to our consumers.
  • Article

Half the Time. Half the Cost. Twice the Impact?

The proliferation of new insight tools has prompted massive changes to the research industry and to how organisations harness the power of insight. This plethora of tools has, understandably, led to an assumption that you can get more for less; you can spend half the time and half the money but get to answers that deliver twice the impact. Half the time? Definitely. Half the cost? Almost certainly. Twice the impact? Hmmm…
  • Article

How and Why You Should be Thinking About Naturals

In the last 2 years we’ve barely worked on a project in retail or FMCG where the ‘naturals’ conversation wasn’t relevant. Even if you feel like your brand is far removed from this conversation currently, there are elements of ‘naturals’ narratives that you can leverage without feeling like you are creating dissonance in your brand story.
  • Article

Demand Spaces – Blunt or Broken?

Demand Spaces are a useful tool to help understand a category and provide clarity on opportunity areas. So why are we working with so many clients who are finding that their Demand Space models are simply not helping in achieving their growth ambitions?
  • Article

The Power of Raw Debriefs

How do you get information into a business in a way that makes sense, makes people think differently and gives them the confidence to make better decisions as a result? Answer: a sheet of Perspex.

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