Working without context is like working in the dark. Working to develop a new product without understanding how it fits in with contemporary life and values is like making something without the benefit of sight.

From the day instinct and reason began we had in place a view about the main changes that would soon impact on the bottom line of organisations. The trends identified were things that were not fads but were relevant to human needs and would have an impact, one way or another, on the profitability of organisations within the next five years.

The trends have underpinned the research and development instinct and reason has pursued with discrete choice modelling developments to assist in predicting future human behaviour as well as the market insight products we have developed. The Over 55s monitor which has been collecting information on this important segment was a direct extension of the trend of shifting demographics. It is now the most important and up-to-date data set in Australia about the experience people are having as they enter the third age.

Most importantly, the understanding of these social trends informs the insights instinct and reason brings in addition to research findings.

How we do it

Identifying trends involves a continuous scan of  literature both the academic and grey literature and then requires testing of these notions of change with evidence from contemporary research undertaken in  focus group discussions, online forums and quantitative research projects.

Keeping up with trends sometimes means collecting primary data and at other times it requires a watching brief on issues that are gaining prominence in media and academic journals. Instinct and reasons does this in conjunction with the many people and organisations we collaborate with. It links with the close connections held with over 40 other research agencies from around the world, a number of key academics and the regular scanning of literature by instinct and reason consultants.

What it means for clients

Providing context to research findings helps us balance the aspirations of consumers with reality. Instinct and reason questions can this idea get the attention of people in a world of declining attention? Will this idea be trusted in a world where there is declining trust in the claims of marketers? Does this idea connect with customers? Is it of any personal relevance? How does this idea bring simplicity to a person’s life? And many more!

instinct and reason test ideas with a broader contextual filter because of the awareness of broader shifts.

The trends are regularly shared with customers at the insights breakfasts usually held in Spring.