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Nursery Blog

It's not big and it's not clever

“It’s not big and it’s not clever” - Mums everywhere

I love a good swear.

Pain, humour, passion, frustration, anger all deserve a good cuss.
A joke can be funnier.
A point can be more pointed.
Anger can be angrier.

I wish the Queen would drop the f-bomb (but I’m pleased she doesn’t do it all the time).
A well placed swear can nail an argument, a barrage of expletives is best left to the drunks.
In...

What can high street retailers learn from Supreme

This past year has not been kind to our high street retailers, nevertheless the popular streetwear brand, Supreme, appears to be stronger than ever. Amidst this year’s football fever the nation saw British High Street staple House of Fraser fall into administration, Marks and Spencer close down several branches and we all waved goodbye to our childhood favourite, Toys ‘R’ Us. Be that as it may,...

Introducing Tracking Plus

Helping brands grow | helping businesses grow

Life for brand marketers is getting tougher; it’s never been more important to find the edge that makes communications spend go further. That’s why The Nursery has reinvented tracking for embattled marketers. We call it Tracking Plus, because conventional tracking isn’t always enough.

Nursery Tracking Plus explains not only how your marketing is...

Empathy: the ability to understand and share the feelings of another

Last week I was fortunate to attend the APG strategy conference, a fantastic event with seven brilliant and eclectic speakers.

A reoccurring theme running through a number of the talks was our preoccupation with our own world, our privilege and our middle-class, London-centric professional bubble.  

Margaret Heffernan reminded us of our tendency to surround ourselves with people like us,...

APG Conference - On the Contrary | The power of contrarian thinking to sharpen strategy and inspire creative

The APG conference took place this year on Monday 8 October at the Royal Institute in London. The day consisted of seven engaging and wide ranging talks, delivered by speakers including a psychologist, a police officer, a lawyer and an organisational change expert. Here’s the Nursery’s round up of the day’s offering:

Professor Nick Chater – The Mind is Flat
Professor Nick Chater kicked off...

The Nursery at the heart of effective campaigns

It's Effectiveness Week (and Vegan week for Bake Off fans). Agencies and clients have been immersed in seminars, festivals, dinners, webinars, conferences chasing the holy grail of finding the secret to making effective ad campaigns.

Perhaps it isn’t such a secret

Because every week is effectiveness week at The Nursery – and whether we are sowing the seeds of new campaigns in creative...

The Nursery acquires market research consultancy Arkenford

NEWS ANNOUNCEMENT 2 JULY 2018

Market Research consultancy, Arkenford has been acquired by award winning London based brand research agency, The Nursery Research and Planning, for an undisclosed amount.

The combination of Arkenford’s innovative quantitative research methods and analytical skills together with The Nursery’s inspiring and constructive brand research will make this a powerhouse of...

Lies and why we tell them

Pauline McGowan waxes lyrical, once again, on her favourite topic.

One of the most difficult reality checks a researcher faces is that human beings are innate liars. Timothy Levine, the chair of communication studies at the University of Alabama, has run some well-constructed studies and while they are based on self-reported lies, they have been repeated and cross referenced. He has found that...

What researchers can learn from a comedy writers' festival

Pauline McGowan and Kate Benson recently presented our humour research to comedy writers at the Craft of Comedy festival in Llandudno.

‘As Swift once said, haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate’ … as conference keynote speeches go, Dave Cohen’s at the Craft of Comedy was one of the most fun, inspiring, practical and creative we’ve come across. And you didn’t need to be a comedy writer to...

Uniqlo - LifeWear and the lifestyle it sells

Uniqlo sells clothes. They are not unique in that. Their clothes are not unique either, they make comfortable clothes with a slightly utilitarian aesthetic. Their LifeWear collection, well-designed basics designed for everyday, particularly embodies this.

Where they are different is in their adverts. Working with Droga5, they have grown further and further away from focusing on clothes in the...

Thinking Around Corners

On Tuesday 8 May Google hosted the APG Thinking Around Corners event at their Soho HQ. The evening saw Martin Weigel, Head of Planning at Wieden + Kennedy, and Richard Shotton, Deputy Head of Evidence at MG OMD, sharing their thoughts on two hot topics within the planning community:

  • How do you get people to entertain facts that don’t accord with their world view?
  • How do you get society/a client/a...

The Paradox of Tinder

Psychologist Barry Schwartz taught us that, paradoxically, the more choices he have, the less happy we are. Rather than enhancing our lives and allowing us to make the most relevant decisions, having more options can overwhelm us, and leave us feeling that the grass is always greener. As Schwartz says:

"Learning to choose is hard. Learning to choose well is harder. And learning to choose well in...

Feeling tap-happy: 2018 as the year of the contactless donation

In December, I predicted that 2018 would be the year that sees contactless charity payments go mainstream – you’ll be able to tap to donate for your poppy, daffodil or geranium badge, and I think it can’t come soon enough. In an increasingly cashless society, and with contactless payments now accounting for more than half of all transactions under 30, I’m hopeful that charities will be able to...

Coffee anyone?

In 2017 The Nursery predicted that 2018 would be the year of the Reusable Cup. As awareness of the waste built up by millions of morning latte habits has grown, we felt sure consumers would be seeking a better more permanent alternative to all those paper cups, plastic lids and corrugated surrounds clogging up litter bins. The shocking truth is that the UK throws away 2.5 billion paper coffee...

You're feeling very sleepy....

It’s time to get down to the real basics now.  Sleep is the current big thing we’re being sold.  It was my prediction at the Nursery predictions for 2018.  I’ve seen it mentioned in loads of articles in Jan and Feb, so thought I’d talk about it and remind everyone where they heard it first.

It’s relevant to everyone and with tech keeping us always on we’re heading for a sleep...

Nursery Rhymes

If anyone has read Dave Trott's latest blog
They'd find he has given our memory a jog
He discusses advertisers' use of rhyme
And reminds us of a more rhythmical time

A time when an apple a day kept the doctor away &
A mars helped you work, rest and play
The trick with rhyme is it makes things important
And can act as an effective prompt or portent

For an issue that needs addressing
That is urgent or...

Home hackers - what does the future hold?

Before Christmas, one of my predictions was that increased usage of the Internet of Things would lead to the first ‘home hacks’. Hackers will start to attack individuals by unlocking their doors, generating random online orders to Tesco or making their living rooms uncomfortably warm.

And although this may sound like a bad joke, or even an episode of Black Mirror, ‘home hacking’ is a growing...

Fantastical, free choice - why the site of Amazon's second US headquarters is of such interest

Late last year Paddy Power opened a book on where Amazon will choose to locate its second US (or rather, North American) headquarters, bringing with it 50,000 jobs, a surge of local optimism and a significant hike to real estate values.

Paddy Power’s action may not be any great barometer of significance, but the considerable number of column inches devoted to this topic has been avidly consumed...

The funniest place in the UK

As part of our year-long study into humour types in 2017, we asked our participants: ‘Where is the funniest place in the UK?’

We expected ‘the north’ to feature highly and indeed it did. In fact, Northerners believed that humour barely exists down south; that life is too corporate and driven by profit and this is prioritised over humour and relationships.

But Southerners also said that life and...

MRS Awards Dinner

On Monday 4 December over 900 people gathered to celebrate at the Market Research Society’s annual awards dinner. Market researchers don’t often shout about the contributions we make, so the MRS award dinner is a great opportunity to celebrate the impact we have on all the industries with which we work. It’s also a chance for us to learn about what everyone’s been up to over the previous year.

...

Unpicking anger

On 8 November the Cultural Insight Forum and BMB held an event on anger. The evening comprised four talks from very different speakers, all touching upon how society views anger and how it can become a force, with both positive and negative outcomes.

We first heard from Ian Murray the founder of House51, a research and strategy agency. His talk centred on the idea that anger is natural and...

Branding Bigness

Some things, surely, are beyond branding – like numbers or bigness for example?

I was listening to the wonderful Tim Harford on More or Less (compulsory homework for market researchers), and they were discussing the names for ever-increasing hard drive, server storage capacity – Giga, Tera, Peta etc – each equivalent to 1000 times the previous one in the series.

As with the annual launch of the...

Thirty Years of IKEA

Thirty years ago IKEA arrived in the UK and transformed the way we live. There cannot be a house in the country that does not contain something from IKEA whether it be a flat pack desk, a Klippan sofa, or a pack of tea lights.

Its mission is simple, ‘to create a better everyday life for the many people’ (ring a bell Jeremy Corbyn?) and whilst many of us have battled to assemble a Billy bookcase...

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