In my strategy practice I borrow occasionallly from the political strategy arena — one such borrow is oppo research, also known as opposition research. Typical brand strategy discovery for me includes a good deal of customer, stakeholder and SME interviews. The sausage making uses some proprietary tools but I’m beginning to think I need to add a new tool. One I’ll trot out an upcoming assignment. Oppo culture.
What’s oppo culture? It’s a clearing of the mind of learned and preconceived notions of ideal consumer behavior. Then it’s going all Aaron Rogers on the topic. That is, a one hour sit-in-the-dark “think” to conger up any an all ideas that might be held by consumers not likely to buy. Or even dislike. Oppo research tries to find leverageable negatives in a candidate and this is not that. Oppo culture is more like understanding a red stater in you are a blue stater. Or a Yankee fan trying to channel a red Sox fan. Duke fan understanding a UNC fan?
Its intent is to provide a mental sanity check. A flushing of ones biases. One hour in the dark should be enough. (How can you type in the dark? Don’t. And no voice recorder either. Just let it percolate.)
Can’t wait to try it. I’ll share results when I can.