Imitating the actions of a rich person with the goal to become rich yourself is a strategy doomed to fail. What might you see a rich person do? Buy a rare vintage watch. Get a luxury car. Vacation on the Riviera. Mimicking those behaviors will simply make anyone not (yet) rich poorer. That’s why Al Ries in his legendary book on branding instructs us rather to study what the rich did before they got rich. He uses this analogy to encourage readers to identify success-generating behavior from businesses similar to your own – instead of looking at what they do today. He encourages the reader to formulate insights on success.
Insights are indeed important, but do we need to limit ourselves to those in a relevant industry? And how do we go about finding them beyond studying the evolutions of other companies?
The highly-successful Indian entrepreneur Kunal Shahn describes an insight as the smallest unit of truth that is actionable. A datapoint is not an insight, nor is information acquired only through research an insight. Insights go beyond questions that can have one objective answer. An insight is the meaning we extract when putting data and information into a context. The context, however, is defined through exploration of the situation at hand from different perspectives and situations. An insight is born where the friction is.
At Seventy, all our work and deliveries are founded on strong and relevant insights; and we get really nerdy on how we go about identifying them. We believe that insights are born in a mix of the quantitative and qualitative, the internal and external, solid data sources and gut feeling. To ensure high-quality insights work, we have integrated supporting principles into everything from our codes to who we hire and how we think.
We live by our codes and two of them are key in our insights work:
- We always try to be a tourist. Emulating success factors of industry leaders only makes sense for followers. Instead, brand leaders need to adopt the mindset of a tourist and travel to completely new places for inspiration. What can cars learn from media? What can fashion learn from food? What can your company learn from another industry?
- We also hit the streets. Powerful brands are not created in meeting rooms and workshops. Authentic experiences with real impact require deep insights from real situations. That’s why we spend more time where our client’s culture is lived and their products are consumed.
- We hire brilliant misfits. We explicitly aim to build teams with individuals with diverse backgrounds, interests, and expertise. The broad range of competencies we find in the Seventy family enables us to always consider problems and situations from many different perspectives. In the complexity of perspectives, great insights are born.
- We have a technology perspective in everything we do. Emerging technology and trends impact your business and customer behaviors as well as our own ways of working. We don’t limit ourselves to reflecting on the impact of technology in business; we also adapt our ways of working and methods to utilize technology in our search for insights.
In need of some business-building insights? Let’s talk.