What are Stakeholder Engagement Sessions?
In an era where the need for customer-centricity trips off every Chief Executive’s tongue, this research technique enables a brand’s stakeholders to get ‘up close and personal’ with their target market.
What are the aims of Stakeholder Engagement Sessions?
This market research technique helps a business focus their energies on the aspects of a brand, product, service etc. that have most appeal to customers. This can help brands both in terms of making tweaks to their existing offer and identifying combinations of features that would amount to a new, appealing proposition.
How are Stakeholder Engagement Sessions undertaken?
Though the precise approach varies according to the objectives, this research often takes the form of workshops where up to 20 customers gather and talk to 6-8 stakeholders; a combination of ‘whole group’ and ‘sub-group’ exercises being run across a 2-3 hour session.
We have discovered that making this work playful is key in putting everyone at ease and encouraging them to say what they really think (stakeholders can be surprisingly nervous about meeting customers!)
Away from the workshop format, we encourage stakeholders to shadow real-life consumer activities – providing an insight into how products/services fit in with the real world and where improvements could lead to improved satisfaction/sales. This shadowing can involve everything from shopping trips to spending a day at home with a family, to just going for a ‘cheeky Nando’s’!
Recent example of our work in this area
A major clothing business now asks us to run seasonal customer closeness sessions with ‘top customers’ to get early feedback on proposed ranges. This permits the business to make tweaks both to quantities bought and decisions on how far across the estate to roll out garments with a more fashion-forward design signature.