Nikki Wicks
Sep 24, 2014

Creativity starts in the research phase: Face Asia

SPIKES ASIA - Creativity isn't just the responsibility of advertising agencies, it starts in the research phase and how you get your insights, according to Andrew Ho, MD at Face Asia.

Andrew Ho (photo from Spikes not available)
Andrew Ho (photo from Spikes not available)

Please see all of our Spikes Asia 2014 coverage here

In a packed forum on day two of Spikes Asia, Ho called for a "mindset shift" in the way research is carried out, in order to discover more valuable insights that can inform great creative work.

Ho suggested that the traditional market research model is broken and that the industry should find more creative ways to gain consumer insight. “How often has a consumer in a focus group come up with a really interesting insight?” he asked, suggesting that the answer was, “not very often.”

“We look for insights to inform creative, so why not create insight creatively,” he said.

Ho highlighted a number of common mistakes that he believes are made in the research process, such as mistaking popularity for relevance and asking the wrong questions in focus groups.

Sharing some key principles that he believes can help uncover fresher and deeper insights, Ho suggested the following:

  • Talk to each other. Stop allowing the planners and research desks to work separately, and get creative involved.
  • Embrace technology in the research phase: “Technology and social media has changed the way we search for insights. We can listen."
  • Brainstorm potential insights the same way you do with creative and get creative people involved.
  • Don’t sit and wait for an insight to come to you. Provoke it. Present more interesting insights and questions for better responses in focus groups.

Campaign’s observations: This was a popular session that raised some interesting questions about the traditional market research model and its role in producing valuable insights. 

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