By Robbin Jaklin, President
Last year, C+R Research celebrated its 50th year of business. With 50 years of history it seemed only appropriate to reflect on that history. But as we have spent the past year reflecting, it is clear that we don't look much like we did 50 years ago...or even 15 years ago. So we did what any good marketing-oriented company would do. We hired an independent brand consultancy to help us discover what our brand means to clients after all these years.
As with all endeavors of this type, a team consisting of internal C+R specialists and the brand consultancy was formed. The net was cast wide--interviews were carried out internally as well as externally with some of our clients, numerous meetings patiently reviewing responses and crafting solutions were attended, and an honest assessment of what we were saying about ourselves as well as a keen look at our business practices took place. Admittedly, it was a lot of work and seemed a bit daunting at first. We've worked with clients to help capture their brand and target usage stories for 50 years! We've helped them evaluate concepts and subsequently develop strategic recommendations for them as well! What, we wondered, were we going to learn about our own brand story? Where were our strengths--or our potential weaknesses? We asked ourselves certain questions continuously throughout the process. What was relevant to us? What worked? What didn't and why? And, lastly, what if...?
Eventually, what seemed at first daunting expanded and began to reveal a very lucid story...and a familiar one. What we were learning about ourselves confirmed what we knew all along. Some things surprised us--in a good way!--and others did not. Our exploration showed that while research has changed a great deal over the years technologically and categorically, the principles that drive our approach to deliver what clients need from us have not. We learned that clients admire our 'whatever it takes' attitude and our commitment to help strengthen and expand their knowledge passionately, creatively, thoughtfully.
We learned that our very consultative and senior level 'hands on' approach to projects underpinned the rewarding relationships we've built with our clients over the years beyond the technology or methodologies involved. Additionally, we learned that, internally, we're a passionate bunch, a creative lot, excited about what we do and deliver department-to-department exactly the same type of commitment and solutions-based customer service that we give to our clients. And, true to our history we aren't a company concerned with being like all the other guys. What we care about is doing what's necessary...and doing what's right.
What we learned in essence about ourselves is our ability to 'get to the heart of it.' So, as spring is upon us, C+R will enjoy a new look... a look and message that reflect who C+R is today, built on a history of what C+R has been for the past 50 years, and what C+R is positioned to be in the coming years.
By Robbin Jaklin, President