B7 Innovation’s Paul Tidmarsh Celebates 200th Adcept Project

B7 Innovation, the world’s leading Adcept specialist, has hit a new milestone – it has now completed 200 Adcept projects.

“It’s hard to believe that we’ve done so many,” says B7 founder Paul Tidmarsh. “We started 11 years ago, working from my kitchen table with just a laptop, a printer and a vision for changing how innovation and brand communication could be explored and researched. A lot has changed since then, but not the vision.”

Since B7’s first project in 2003 (the re-positioning of Archers Peach Schnapps), the agency has gone on to work on the development of some of the world’s most respected brands. Those who have passed through their doors include Dove, Philips, Flora, Bell’s Whisky and Tesco.

“Although our vision hasn’t changed,” says Paul Tidmarsh, “our techniques have. We’re always looking for little ways to improve our methodology. Mainly lots of tiny tweaks that in themselves don’t seem important, but when you add them together, mean a lot. It’s like a sportsman concentrating on the one activity every day, trying to find some extra edge – specialisation and focus lead to excellence.”

B7’s Adcept methodology came from a frustration with concept statements traditionally used in qualitative research. “Concept statements are completely alien to focus group members and they lack any emotion” says Paul Tidmarsh. “Our Adcepts speak to consumers in the familiar language of brands – advertising. They also have emotion and personality, which is usually the most important aspect of a modern brand.”

“Early on, it could be difficult to get clients to look beyond concept statements simply because that was how everybody thought research was done. But when people saw what we were doing, they were amazed” says Paul. “Not only were our Adcepts better than concept statements, we could also show up to 80 different ones per focus group, meaning no potentially interesting ideas need be excluded, and every idea area could be explored from multiple angles.”

“We’ve been really fortunate to work with some of the best brand teams, research agencies and advertising agencies through these 200 projects. We think we’ve contributed a lot, but we’ve learnt plenty too. All our work comes from repeat clients or referrals, so we must be doing something right,” says Paul Tidmarsh, “here’s to the next 200 projects!”.

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