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A Year Filled with Wisdom.

When we launched our Quote to Self project this past February, we were unsure where it would take us, who we would meet and if people would even participate. Asking the question “What advice would you give to your 15-year-old self?” turned into more than we expected. Check out a few highlights from our team:

  • We met a man in Budapest who was reading on a bench by the Danube. When we asked him “The Question,” he thought about it, shook his head and said, “I can’t. That is too big of a question.” We were walking around a nearby park about an hour later when the same man came up to us and said excitedly, “OK, I have an answer now. I would tell myself not to be afraid. Fear is a lie. You can do whatever you want and be whatever you want to be.” We felt honored that he took the time to find us.
  • On a very hot June afternoon, we came across a photographer from California who was visiting Minneapolis. He answered our question in an extremely positive manner: “It will work out, and in the end you’ll get to where you’re trying to go. Crawl before you walk, crawl before you walk.” We laughed with him and had a short conversation. Afterward, he took our photo and we parted ways.
  • In Prague, on the Charles Bridge, we met a Scottish man who now lives and works in Prague. He said he rarely goes to the touristy parts of the city but felt the urge to visit that day. He, like most others we met, was skeptical upon our approach but quickly warmed up. We had a great five- to 10-minute conversation (much longer than most of our interactions), and at the end he said he was so glad he decided to follow his urge to be a tourist that day. His advice: “I trust my 15-year-old self to be the same as my now 50-year-old self. And I wouldn’t try to ask my 50-year-old self to give advice to me because I’m the same man as I was then and the same person. I don’t need to advise me and I couldn’t advise him.”
  • We asked a mother at United Noodle (an Asian marketplace) with two kids under the age of 7 – one in her arms and another at her feet. At first she was flustered by the commotion and our request, but then she paused to think about it and looked at her kids. Her response was a mixture of reflecting on her life and thinking about her kids. It stayed with us because it was such a great dynamic of looking into the past and the future.

Now, that’s just a snippet of what happened in the last 10 months. To see more stories, visit our Quote to Self webpage or our Instagram gallery.

 


| Creative, Culture, Quote to Self Project, Research

Public Sector.

Whether we’re closely following an election or simply grabbing a cup of coffee in a crowded café, there’s a good chance we’ll hear someone mention taxes – and what our taxes pay for at the local, state or federal level.

While opinions abound (and we’re certainly not here to give one), one thing we’ve been thinking about lately is the people compensated by those tax dollars. No, not just the politicians making the news. The everyday people: firefighters, snowplow operators, public defenders, librarians, mail carriers and beyond.

What’s life like for people who work in the public sector? Is their experience different than it is for those of us in the private sector? Learn more in our latest insight.


| Creative, Culture, Research

Embrace All Your Passions.

Do you remember when your parents enrolled you in multiple extracurricular activities? It wasn’t a secret that they wanted to keep us occupied and busy throughout the year. Activities varied from sports to art classes, acting, dancing or music lessons. We loved bits and pieces of each activity, but we ultimately focused on one or two we enjoyed the most.

At our 15th anniversary party, we asked guests to interact with our Quote to Self exhibit and give advice to their 15-year-old selves. One partygoer, Grace, submitted advice that really stuck with us.

“Readily embrace all your passions. You don’t need to choose one.”

We reflected on how participating in different activities added a little excitement to our lives. We got to meet new people and really express ourselves. So why not make time for the activities you love to do? It might bring out the kid in you.

If you have a nugget of wisdom to share, visit our Quote to Self website to participate. Your advice is important and we want to hear from you!

Follow our Quote to Self Instagram and Facebook pages to see other advice we’ve collected thus far.

 


| Quote to Self Project, Research

Enjoy Your Journey.

Over the course of our Quote to Self project, we’ve had candid conversations with family, friends and even strangers we meet on the street about what advice they would give their 15-year-old selves. We’ve encountered people who knew instantly and others who were caught off guard and took some time to reflect. It seems that we are all reminded of how life is short, and it seems that as you get older, the years go by even quicker. We turn to Jeff’s quote, which articulates the value of enjoying life’s journey.

“Sometimes a 15-year-old has to grow up fast, so you gotta be ready for anything. Buckle up – you only get one chance to enjoy this journey called life.”

The unique objective of this project is that we have allowed everyone to take a moment to reflect on their lives and see the growth they’ve experienced that has made them who they are today. Check out our Quote to Self website to see the inspiring advice we have collected over the course of the year.

If you have a nugget of wisdom to share with us, visit our Quote to Self website to participate. We want to hear from you!

Follow our Quote to Self Instagram and Facebook pages to see other advice we’ve collected thus far.

 


| Creative, Culture, Quote to Self Project, Research

Marketing to Generations.

Five different generations now have purchasing power, so how are companies figuring out how to best serve each of these generations individually? Mostly by conducting research to learn how behaviors among generations can impact marketing campaigns and purchasing habits. We attended a recent conference at the Carlson School of Management whose goal was to answer this question. Eight keynote speakers presented, including representatives from Target, Under Armour, Starbucks and Electronic Arts.

One part of the conference that particularly stood out to us was the talk by Linh Peters, vice president of brand marketing for Starbucks. In 2017, Starbucks was attempting to relaunch its Nitro Cold Brew coffee, trying to make it relevant nationwide. Through qualitative research, Starbucks found that the taste and texture of the coffee were what resonated with customers most strongly. However, at the same time customers were confused about how the nitro process connects to that taste and texture experience. So Starbucks had to build understanding and believability when relaunching the Nitro Cold Brew. Its strategy included bringing on Bill Nye (“the Science Guy”) as a spokesperson for the campaign, with hopes of educating customers on the nitro process in a less technical fashion. Nye was brought in also because he resonates with multiple generations, and Nitro Cold Brew was intended to appeal to the mass market.

This case study and others from this conference started us thinking about how our clients are figuring out the best ways to reach their core consumers and what research they might be conducting in order to improve their own strategy. How is your company tackling the ever-changing consumer market? Connect with us to continue the conversation.


| Research
 
 

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