'Empowering diverse brand stakeholders to build authentic relationships through shared values.'
GLEAN A PEOPLE INSPIRED BIG IDEA THAT ALIGNS BUSINESS & CONSUMER OBJECTIVES TO DRIVE MARKETPLACE SUCCESS.
Doing more with what’s already there, gaining clarity on what’s missing or creating something altogether new to capitalize on market white space, are primary ways I have supported corporate, retail, FMCG & non-profit clients, as well as startup entrepreneurs.
Discovery, Connection, Authenticity & Innovation drive everything I do with a primary goal toward helping clients insightfully respond to constraints & catalyze long term sustainable success by utilizing the untapped potential of both internal & external culture building opportunities.
Generally speaking it involves some or all of these steps in about this order:
DISCOVER. ENGAGE. IDEATE. STRATEGIZE. DESIGN. TEST. ITERATE.
DISCOVER Attacking, or leading multidiscipline & cross-functional teams to attack, projects from multiple angles, swiftly & efficiently, believing the first step is to make sure all the puzzle pieces are out of the box & facing up…namely collecting all qualitative & quantitative data plus identifying what’s missing.
ENGAGE Uniting representative stakeholders through an appropriate processing methodology, where innovation happens from all voices being heard…sifting through data points, understanding & building consensus around what the problem actually is, plus the opportunities, constraints & priorities.
IDEATE Exploring quick study concepts & solutions either within a group construct or separately.
STRATEGIZE Formalizing high-level frameworks such as the primary problem being solved for, purpose, differentiation, communications, internal barriers/concerns, more.
DESIGN Developing experiences across the spectrum of physical & digital touch points that inspire internal & external People to forge Community through Shared Values.
TEST/EMPLOY Executing & testing to gather feedback for next iteration.
ITERATE Refining or starting over based on feedback & new discovery.
MORE MEANING MATTERS = PROFIT + PURPOSE
Ways I support Organizations & Entrepreneurs:
-- Research: deep-dive into myriad data sets 1] to glean current problem being solved for, objectives & strategy 2] to identify relevant: cultural drivers, competitors, best practice, trends, influencers, technologies looking both in/out of immediate industry sector 3] to identify existing resources, constraints, opportunities/market white space 4] to review current analytics, content/brand presence to date & objectives, 6] to understand existing & potential customers: motivations-expectations-aspirations, pain point 7] to identify key word identification, metrics, benchmarks 8] to support new business or investor facing presentations, develop proposals, address specific project aspects or other activities required by either strategic or creative team members 9] to identify what research/inputs are missing.
-- Data Gathering/Survey: communications audits, 1 on 1 interviews, affinity mapping, consumer journey diagramming, qualitative surveying, digital analytics review, heuristic & usability evaluations, focus group development, ethnographic reporting, more.
-- Collaborative Thinking: organize team brain-storming, design thinking sessions including relevant & diverse stake-holders toward catalyzing initial actionable insights for allocating resources.
-- Strategy Development: comprehensive ‘business as brand’ platform grounded in shared value proposition to optimize opportunities, resources & therefore sustainability, includes: target/persona detailed clarification, problem we’re solving, big idea-perspective framework, customer journey across all touch points, digital & physical, sales funnel overview & KPI identification to track progress, etc. Formal high-level messaging & channel focus, influencer/alliance/partner exploration —all to narrow focus & guide subsequent developmental efforts more effectively & efficiently.
-- Communications Planning: holistic, content strategy & digital marketing approach, including vision, mission, values, attributes, positioning, brand pillars & narrative toward aligning with research & strategy to guide all subsequent content development. Expressive of an org’s mission, purpose, Why? & ideally integrates customer-sourced storytelling.
-- Identity & Experience Design: quick & comprehensive strategic-creative iterations across all relevant media channels for promoting team thinking, community engagement & perspective formation, including: web, video, social media, app, print, new product/packaging, environmental & event design.
-- Testing: online A/B testing/survey or in-person survey/focus group development to fast-track learning & iteration.
-- Presentation & New Business Development: preparing best-practice case models, in-house presentations to promote better understanding of priority informants, client or investor pitches, press/media kits, brand guidelines, etc.
BRING PEOPLE TOGETHER with structure
Whether ideating ways to engage the target out there, or considering tactics to optimize an internal team's potential, relationship & process are critical to both. Consumers or team members are more likely to open up to you, if you do so with them, & structure is essential to shape plus sustain that exchange. My approach to any project is to model openness & trust plus encourage cross-discipline team members & stake-holders to do the same. Three frameworks for gaining optimal team results include:
Design Thinking = Discovery Tool
- appropriateness toward exploring Consumer Experience & Tangible Product Development through an empathetic lens for nailing the heart/soul issues.
- provides deeper understanding of the consumer, their needs, articulation of their problem[s] that need to be solved/their jobs that need to be done, defining critical ingredients that must be present in solution.
Lean StartUp = Process Tool
- appropriateness toward launching initial MVP prototypes for observation/adaption purposes.
- quickest, cheapest way to get completed concept in front of consumers to gain feedback, observe behavior, & measure results against goals to optimize iteration efficiency to the refinement process.
Agile = Management Tool
- appropriateness toward developing software & similar to Lean
- a methodology supporting continued refinement through Rapid Learning Cycles with strict deadline controls for setting priorities.
WIN-WIN RESULTS are derived from the facts + our yearning for fiction
I believe we’re all influenced by the facts & our desired fiction. Regardless of the next sweeping wave of economic disruption or tech advancement this goal post shaped decision-making construct will remain, knowing one side may be more heavily weighted depending on the value proposition.
Analytics & metrics are at our fingertips ad nauseam, providing plenty of insights to harvest around the ‘doing’ behaviors of consumers. Awesome. Humankind can also be pursued & understood by way of their insatiable quest for shaping meaning around their own identities through modern day interpretations of age-old cultural symbols. So along with all the AI empowered data sets, should also go some data derived more from psychically derived methods courtesy of the ancients, such as Greek God or Jungian Archetypes & The Hero’s Journey, to help crack open the ‘motivations’ or the Why? for all that doing.
The most effective commercial outcomes are expedited when you can combine both frameworks under a Big Idea that resolves business goals, tactical operations & desired user behavior. Most times something pretty close to someone’s ‘Inner Truth’ is the winner.
Most critical for developing any value proposition is 360 Research to unearth the relevant Facts plus Emotional triggers within a particular segment & context. 360 Research includes exploring, as much as possible, the quantitative & qualitative data sets to reveal the most relevant Consumer, Cultural, Business, Trends & Influencer inputs, to literally concoct an initial ‘bubbling petri-dish stewpot’ of potential. From this elemental alchemy, prioritized & foundational insights can be gleaned to launch a well-considered direction through one of the processes mentioned above.
MORE ABOUT ME
As a lifelong learner, adventurer, thinker & maker, I am intrinsically drawn to combining the unexpected to create something new.
Another personal informant includes my holistic life view, having walked in more than a few 'segment' shoes: child, pre-teen, teen, 20 & 30 something, young professional, bride to be, wife, pregnant woman, new parent, parent of teens, parent of Millennials, daughter, caregiver of in-firmed parent, personal & beauty care shopper, financial advice/health care/insurance seeker, Boomer, homemaker, wine & gardening enthusiast, vacation planner, activist, style maven, fitness aspirant, sailing lover, plus many more.
In addition, I come to the 'Marketing & Advertising' space in atypical fashion -not through business school or a communications degree- but from a storytelling & systems based design background informed by architecture plus film making. I had an idyllic childhood growing up near the Mississippi Delta in a small town filled with farmers, bankers & other 'Busy Town' sorts where everybody knew your name & friendly conversation was the currency. An oasis by today's standards, where as a 5 yr old I led playmate expeditions within a 2 block radius to discover hidden wonders brought to vivid life by my big-fish storytelling. Within the past 4 years I've discovered I'm an INTJ personality type, characterized as 'mastermind' or 'walking think tank', the rarest type found in women [1 in 1,250].
All of these attributions, along with my personal long-standing Why?, believing if you fly up high enough you’ll be able to help people do something better that benefits everyone, it's clear how important intellectual honesty & culture are to me. I would articulate my innate approach to life as having a perspective-effectiveness orientation in which I value deep, careful, long range thinking around complex challenges, with an exceptional ability to perspective shift, detect patterns, intuitively perceive motivations & envision the long range implications of actions. Simultaneously, I innately seek measurable means & efficiencies to achieve sustainable impact. In short, I’m impassioned to pursue both Fast Wins & Long Range Elegant Solutions to unwieldy, complex challenges.
These insights highlight my unique value in the context of a world requiring immediate results. I have what it takes to catalyze quick wins, plus I can also help lead much longer range ones that foster far greater reaching potential.