insighting, marketing, planning, researching, understanding

Yeah Yeah but what’s the Insight?: a lesson in reverse-engineering from Contagious Magazine


a couple of weeks ago I found myself in the fortunate position of being one of the delegates on Contagious Magazine's Crash Course, a one-day workshop in the company of @JessGreenwood and @gual_contagious in how to understand the changing landscape of communications, but more specifically on how to apply Contagious' observations of this landscape to my own strategy and thinking.

there was huge value in the day, but one particular exercise has stayed with me.  one particular exercise that forced me to stop just admiring and enjoying other people's strategies and execution, and really think about them.  as an exercise its elegance itself, and one that I've certainly forgotten to do of late.

the exercise consists of a simple question; on seeing or observing a case study or piece of creative communications, ask yourself a single question…

what was the insight?

what was the crystallised observation of humanity that led to the solution?  what was the observation that sparked the execution, or experience, or application or movie or competition or retail space or book or course or race or tech or social media monitoring desk?

it's beautifully simple, and forces you to not just passively admire the work your looking at, but intellectually interrogate the work to understand how and why it was developed…

try it with these … for each example of work, ask yourself what the insight was?  the answers – as suggested by Contagious, are beneath…


OK … now for the insights that led to the above:


you may think that some of the insights are obvious, but everything so gloriously is in retrospect.  and in many ways the best insights are obvious; and whilst that doesn't make them any easier to spot, it makes it all the more enlightening – and for that matter fun – when to try to guess…


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