Tech Companies…What’s Your Brand Strategy?
10 Sep 2015
Technology is the fastest growing industry in New York City. In 2014, jobs in this sector had grown by 33%. As the tech boom continues, how can your brand stand out from the crowd? By developing a strong brand strategy, you can elevate your company above the rest!

Even if your product is unique, it is imperative to find your target and communicate what makes your brand special. However, gaining a potential client’s attention poses a challenge since there are more communication channels than ever before. Consumers’ attention is no longer focused on just one medium. Viewers are consuming content across mobile, desktops, and televisions. Besides, mobile consumption is divided into so many different categories and applications, all with their own tracking devices.

Research that Leads to Brand Strategy

To overcome these challenges, you need a better understanding of who your customer is. For example, which clients will most quickly adapt to your technology? Is your tech company marketing to the right market? Does your audience desire to be part of a new emerging trend? Additionally, what are specific attributes of this audience (age, gender, household income, and/or psychographic attitudes) and how can you leverage that?

It is key to uncover essential information and gather important insights in order to reach your desired audience. Ordinarily, companies like Provoke Insights provide services and tools to help you learn about consumers’ media usage, habits and even specific information about their favorite blog. Furthermore, the research services that we provide will help your tech company develop a strong brand strategy.

Turning Innovation into an Action Plan

Even if your technology is the most advanced in the marketplace, it is a challenge to answer your customers’ needs in a simple and digestible method. In this case, the ‘difference’ needs to be significant and can be developed into a compelling story that separates your product from the competitors. Particularly, it’s important that you can pinpoint what makes your product innovative to consumers in order to maximize sales. Usually, market strategists develop smart action plans based on their own opinions.

For instance, Google Glass was marketed to the general population, and their strategy was based on their belief that their product was exceptional. However, the general public didn’t receive Google Glass too well. Thus, the product failed to generate as much profit as expected. But Google then decided to do some market research on who could benefit most from the Glass technology, and marketed to construction workers. As a result, the product has been a great success. In other words, research can lead you to find the right market.

As you can tell, there are many moving parts to a holistic marketing strategy. Above all, Provoke Insights’s goal is to assist with all aspects of your marketing and branding needs.

About Provoke Insights

Provoke Insights is a full-service brand consultancy and market research firm. Our innovative approach helps brands navigate through today’s cluttered marketing space. We are the nerds behind the advertising, branding, media, and content marketing initiatives. Our obsession with data and research makes your marketing strategy compelling and impactful.

Check out some of our most recent posts from our strategy and advertising research blog here:

  1. Blockchain & the Markest Research Industry
  2. Is Your Research Stuck in the 1980s: Update Your Brand Tracker!
  3. Market Research Doesn’t Need to Be Boring: Improve Data Visualization
  4. Tips For Building Brand Strategy for a Successful Brand
  5. What’s the Difference Between Quantitative and Qualitative?

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Check out our most recent features in the news media:

September 11th, 2019: 40% of U.S. Millennials prefer crypto investments in the event of a recession: eToro Survey

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Keep on the lookout for more blog posts from us!

75% of Small Businesses Want to Use More Analytics
10 Sep 2015

Big Data

Big data can sometimes seem like the cosmos; a nebulous mix of analytics, cloud storage, and private information that can be both mysterious and intimidating. This is especially true for small businesses. A recent survey conducted by Provoke Insights, a brand consultancy and market research firm, found that two-thirds of small companies still don’t know how to navigate big data. Despite this, most companies desperately want to be able to harness the power of analytics. Though intimidating, big data should be analyzed and leveraged appropriately; otherwise a company is not operating to its fullest capacity and money may be left on the table. Small businesses can’t afford to have others eat their lunch.

The Importance of a Marketing Plan

Small businesses must have a well-defined marketing plan in place. Analytics and big data should be a big part of the plan. The power of big data and analytics can be harnessed in a number of ways. Including using analytics to inform marketing initiatives, using analytics as a way to gauge what’s working, and what needs some improvement. Without analytics, a small business is simply guessing the right move as opposed to using data to help them make more intelligent and informed decisions.

If you are a small business and you need help with your marketing plan, Provoke  Insights can help. Feel free to contact us for tips on how to create a marketing plan that uses analytics to make informed decisions.

Measuring Content Marketing ROI
10 Sep 2015
Content Marketing has become the number one way for businesses to increase their online presence. Through articles, blogs, videos, pictures, surveys, and infographics, companies can better communicate with their customers.

Companies use this marketing initiative to create a personality and thought leadership, as well as provide an opportunity to engage with consumers. Creating effective content improves SEO, thus enabling potential customers to find businesses more easily via online search.

However, determining the ROI on content marketing is not straightforward, but there are ways to measure it.

Consumption metrics– This metric measures how many people are consuming your content and which channels they are using to consume it. It also measures how frequent and in-depth their consumption is.

You can calculate the consumption metric by counting total and unique visits, downloads, time spent on site, cost per visitor, and bounce rate.

Lead generation metrics- This metric measures effectiveness of a content piece by requiring a name or email address before viewing the content.

Sharing metrics- This metric measures 1) what content is being shared and 2) by who. An increasing number of shares implies that your content is becoming more effective.

It is also important to analyze who is actually sharing your content.  Social influencers spread the word across a larger audience, therefore making them a more desirable target.

Sales metrics- This is the most straightforward way of measuring ROI for content marketing efforts. There are CRM systems to track actual sales close rates. It is key that the CRM system can follow a customer’s path from awareness to the actual sale.   With this type of system, you can determine which types of content really drive sales.

Content marketing is vital to a business’s marketing campaign. By using these metrics effectively and efficiently, businesses will be able to figure out which content works and which doesn’t.  It also helps companies determine how to best create and utilize content marketing.

Capitalize on Your Consumer’s Multichannel Behavior
10 Sep 2015

Changing Brand Interactions

Are you aware that consumers’ interactions with your brand are not what they used to be? Consumers are now consuming media from multiple devices simultaneously – this is what we call ‘Multichannel Behavior.’ Shoppers talk about your brand while they watch your latest commercial, then comment on it with hashtag messages via their smartphone. It is no longer a controlled, one-on-one conversation between consumers and a brand. As a result, brands need to adapt to this new method of media consumption.

Your brand needs to understand and capitalize on the fact that your consumer and his/her peers spend about 15 hours in front of truly beloved companions such as smartphones, laptops, tablets, or even smart TVs using 63GB of data daily!

This exposure to various mediums means there is more opportunity to catch the attention of the consumers and engage them with your offer. However, their journey from one device to another is fragmented, now you have to invest in many more advertising placements than ever before.

The Second Screen

In order to understand them and multichannel behavior better, you must know how they leverage the power of their second screen:

  • Consumers are multitaskers, viewing unrelated content on multiple devices simultaneously.
  • This group start their journey on one device and continue it on another.
  • The next-generation search and investigate related content to what they see on another device.
  • Millennials interact with their social networks while they watch other media.


Don’t be scared of multichannel behavior, there are plenty of opportunities due to the following:

  • Consumers do not leave the room or change the channel for a commercial break.
  • Soppers watch TV in social settings.
  • Despite multi-screening, ad recognition is not affected.

As the consumers change the way they gather information and switch between devices, advertisers should use the available research to both understand their consumer journeys and, more importantly, to reach them at the best moment while they are within their comfort zones.

Learn more about how the landscape is changing here.

Five Tips For Getting Your Brand’s Social Media Right
10 Sep 2015

Social media has gone mainstream.  Consumers age 45-54 are the fastest growing segments on Facebook and Google+. Users age 55-64 are the quickest growing segment on Twitter.  No longer is it a playground to hopefully show your relevance to younger consumers.

Are you thinking about your brand’s social media strategy?  Here are five tips to getting social right!

  1. Consistent Brand Persona The content you post on social media should be aligned with your brand persona but more importantly should go beyond the benefits of your products to make it more relevant with your consumers and attract prospects.  In order to truly stand out, you need a social media strategy.
  2.  Inspire Your Audience Social sites are not the place to sell your product or services but instead a platform to let your audience establish a relationship with your brand. You want to inspire your audience to follow you by sharing your firm’s belief and motivation.  Apple does not claim to make the best products but instead builds its cult following by insisting that they “think different.” The message resonates with individuals who believe themselves unique or different despite the ubiquity of white earbuds.
  3. Mobile First Consider details such as the fact that 189 million Facebook users only access the site from mobile devices. It is in your best interest to adopt a mobile-first policy for content creation.  Ensure that your content displays well on mobile devices then adopt it for other screens.
  4. Beyond Facebook Social media is bigger than Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.  LinkedIn adds approximately two members per second.  Blogs and forums are viable places to establish thought leadership and frequently harbor influential early adopters. If you are planning on reaching Millennials then you need to consider video, as images are already passé. Cable networks don’t reach nearly as many adults aged 18-34 as does YouTube.  As well, combine that with the previously mentioned facts about mobile use.
  5. Measure! Measure!  Measure! The most important thing to know is your campaign goal and the metrics to assess your progress.  If you are focused on generating traffic, the measurement metric will differ from a firm primarily interested in engagement.
47% of Advertising Professionals Hate the Pitch Process
10 Sep 2015

The pitch process is part of an advertising agency’s DNA

The pitch process is mandatory if an agency wants to acquire new business. In addition, with the average length of the client relationship diminishing from eight years in 1997 to only three years today, pitching is occurring more frequently (ANA, 2012).  

However, according to a survey by Provoke Insights, approximately half (47%) of advertising professionals say they are dissatisfied with the current internal approach to pitching. To sum up, the time, expense, and resources used during the pitch process are often extensive. 

Professionals hate the pitch process

“I hate the pitch process,” one account professional confessed, under anonymity. “It means working 24-7 and completely wears everyone out.” Therefore, it is not shocking that the industry says unrealistic timelines (66%) and long work hours (65%) are critical reasons for such frustration. Certainly, the demand for pitching is not a new issue; management expects employees to give their sweat and tears. In addition, weekends and nights would be devoted to winning new business.

Can the pace of the pitch process be avoided?

Surprisingly, employees believe that they can prevent these tiring work conditions if better organization and processes were in place. “Very chaotic, no clear direction until the last minute,” a media analyst mentioned when recalling his most recent pitch.

Interestingly, those who are happy with their experiences during the pitch process mention teamwork as a crucial reason for their satisfaction. “Good collaboration and clear understanding of a common purpose,” an account executive indicated as success factors.

Other frustrations

Another area of frustration during pitches is having timely access to the appropriate research and data. Moreover, forty-four percent of advertising professionals stated that if there were better availability of research and data, pitches would run smoother and more successful. More so, those who received data for pitches, 48% mentioned the speed of resources was not quick enough.

An agency has one shot to deliver the right message, so research and insights are imperative. Further, no matter how innovative the creative is, the pitch could be off base. “Base winning creative on research and insights. However, research isn't necessary for creatives, causing strategies to be lackluster,” a strategic planner stated.
As a result, advertising research is crucial during the pitch process. In conclusion, receiving extra support and resources in regards to understanding of the target audience (57%), competitive intelligence (53%) followed by trends analysis (53%), industry intelligence (47%) and social listening (42%) are key areas employees believe the pitch process can be more successful.

Provoke Insights conducted an online survey between November 8th – December 8th, 2013. The company promoted the survey to advertising agency employees through targeted Facebook posts and industry relevant LinkedIn groups; 140 advertising professionals completed the survey.

Check out some of our most recent posts from our strategy and advertising research blog here:

  1. Blockchain & the Markest Research Industry
  2. I'm Just Not That Into You: Exclusivity or Bad Marketing?
  3. Is Your Research Stuck in the 1980s: Update Your Brand Tracker!
  4. Market Research Doesn't Need to Be Boring: Improve Data Visualization
  5. Tips For Building Brand Strategy for a Successful Brand
  6. What's the Difference Between Quantitative and Qualitative?

Sign up for our newsletters here!

Follow our social media accounts:




Check out our most recent features in the news media:

September 11th, 2019: 40% of U.S. Millennials prefer crypto investments in the event of a recession: eToro Survey

July 31st, 2019: Jewelry Is About to Get its Own ‘Got Milk’ Ads

July 1st, 2019: 22 Top Advertising Research Companies 2019

May 23rd, 2019: NYMRAD’s Q1 State Of The Market Report Arrives

April 8th, 2019: eToro survey finds millennials are leading the shift from stocks to crypto

February 19th, 2019: New eToro Survey: Nearly Half of Millennials Trust U.S. Stock Market Less Than Crypto

February 13th, 2019: The Value of B2B Equity

December 18th, 2019: eToro Survey: 44% of Investors Identify Education as Main Barrier to Crypto Trading

Keep on the lookout for more blog posts from us!

Provoke Insights is a full-service market research firm. We help build and grow brands using multiple market research methodologies including qualitative, quantitative, and secondary research. We hope to work with you in the future.

Understand What Your Consumer Really Wants
10 Sep 2015

Are you truly listening?   Social listening is a powerful tool that goes beyond just monitoring your brand and competitors sentiment.

Have you thought about listening beyond what people say about your brand?  With 73% of online Americans using social networking sites, it is crucial to understand what your customers are talking about online beyond your brand (Pew Internet, December 27, 2013).  If you don’t know what your customers are saying, how can your brand join their online conversation? Social listening is the crucial element to create a 3D image of your target audience. This enables your brand to make strategic business decisions and stay ahead of the competition.

Social listening involves monitoring news sites, blogs, micro-blogging, social networking sites, forums, eCommerce platforms and many more. This allows you to better understand the bigger conversation among your target audience (not just about your brand).   As a result, you can now place your brand in other conversations beyond the traditional discussion.  A great example would be Red Bull.  Even though they are an energy drink, they have expanded the conversation to extreme sports.

More so, social listening allows you to identify your brand’s key influencers.  It is not enough to follow these opinion leaders, but it is crucial that you actively engage with them.  This will ultimately create new brand advocates.


Advertising & the Millennials
09 Sep 2015
Millennials are the largest generation in the United States; no wonder brands want to capture this audience. Unfortunately, advertising to Millennial is quite difficult. This group’s disdain for traditional advertising (52% feel overwhelmed by the number of ads they see each day) makes them a hard bunch to reach. Millennials demand authenticity and transparency and take great pains to thoroughly research their brands. So how do we capture this demanding market?

Make them laugh

While Millennials detest traditional advertising, humor may help them pay more attention.  Eighty percent say they are more likely to remember an ad if it’s funny. Millennials appreciate a clever TV spot, or a little quirkiness if it helps them identify with the brand.  If done well, the chuckles may even hit the millennial authenticity bone. As they say with humor – it’s funny because it’s true.

Make them believe you

Maybe humor doesn’t quite match your brand’s image; then your charge is to find a message or value proposition that speaks to the Millennials’ sense of altruism.

Millennials view themselves as responsible and compassionate, with 22% wanting to make a positive impact on their communities.  A socially conscious brand can win over this target if they can prove their claims when advertising to Millennials. Half of Millennials read reviews before making a purchase and are very careful to investigate the brands they support.

Make them feel unique

Millennials want customizable products. With the help of social media, they have spent time curating their image; they want to continue this with the brands they use.

While a challenging segment to capture, Millennials are definitely worth the effort. A brand that can grab their attention, pass the ‘authenticity test’, or provide a customizable experience, has the potential to win long-term brand loyalists.

Learn more about Millennials here.

Reference: “Marketing to Millennials,” Mintel.  February 2015.