How we find Human Truth that transforms brands and businesses.

Answering the Question Behind the Question

Human Truth. It’s why we do what we do. And it’s the key to aligning your brand with what’s most meaningful to your customers.

Human Truth is complicated and often hidden – a unique product of a person’s biology, biography and environment. To find it, we must dig deeper. Human Truth is revealed only by identifying and analyzing the conscious and non-conscious motivations, values and subjective meanings that people use to make sense of the world.

Revealing Human Truth requires the unique talents and tools Brandtrust has perfected over two decades:

  • Rooting inquiry in applied social and behavioral science disciplines
  • Anchoring in the lived experience of the respondent
  • Minimizing respondent priming to get at authentic emotion and meaning
brand and consumer insights

Change begins to happen when you ask the first question:

“Inquiry and change are not separate moments, but are simultaneous. Inquiry is intervention. The seeds of change—the things people think about and talk about, the things people discover and learn, and the things that inform dialogue and inspire images of the future—are implicit in the very first questions we ask. The questions set the stage for what we find, and what we discover (the data) becomes the linguistic material, the stories, out of which the future is conceived and constructed.”

Stefan P. Cantore and David L. Cooperrider

Equipped with the fundamental Human Truths relevant to your category, we address the critical dimensions of how you connect both internally and externally.

For brand challenges, we identify differentiating external equities

What sets you apart in the market?

For culture challenges, we identify essential internal equities

What makes your culture unique?

For experience challenges, we identify deep customer needs and the moments that matter

How must your brand show up?

For behavior challenges, we identify key drivers and barriers

What will it take to unlock change?

Then, we apply our Truth, Clarity, Action Framework to guide client teams in applying revealed Human Truth to drive change and, ultimately

Achieve the future you desire for your brand and your business.

We Can Answer That

Often, the fundamental questions you’d most like to address can seem the most elusive.

We uncover the Human Truth that brings them to light. For example, you might be asking:

How do people really feel about my brand?

What separates my most loyal customers from my average customers?

How can we truly put the customer at the heart of our decision-making process?

What is the patient experience and how can it be positively shaped by my brand?

Why aren’t people choosing my product when it works better and costs less?

What are the unmet needs where my brand could be making an even greater impact?

What drives my employees to get and stay engaged?

brand strategy firm

How do we find the answers and discover human truth?

We’ve developed a powerful toolkit of immersive methodologies anchored in story and human experience

Our trademarked approach is designed to better understand the deeper motivations of why people do what they do. We use memory and visualizations to tap into subconscious mental models embedded in formative experiences, and rely on dynamic probing to get beyond rationalizations and avoid priming.

brand insights

Emotional Inquiry®

Narrative Inquiry allows researchers to delve into the memory of consumers’ experiences through the stories they tell. Story helps researchers understand the context in which the memory was constructed and identify patterns which reveal the mental models that influence consumer behavior and perception.

brand insights

Narrative Inquiry

For this methodology, we focus on systematically discovering the best aspirational self in people, ethics, and practices in organizations. By linking the energy of how your organization looks and behaves at its best directly to any change agenda, breakthroughs never thought possible are suddenly and democratically mobilized.
Appreciative Inquiry

Appreciative Inquiry

Finding deep insight from social data, Social Inquiry goes beyond superficial listening. An important building block to Social Inquiry is breaking apart the conversation to understand what drives it. It’s about understanding: what people talk about, how they feel, what’s their perspective and context, what are their motivations and intent- which lets us see beyond simplistic metrics to get at the heart of the matter.
Social Inquiry™

Social Inquiry™

This primarily observational-based approach reveals both the personal stories and environmental influencers driving perceptions and decision making. These insights are particularly effective in helping to identify actual behavior because of the ability to see respondents interacting within their own environment.

Contextual Inquiry

Contextual Inquiry

This approach reveals the deeper perceptions audiences hold for a particular idea, or concept, unearthing mental models embedded in memories and eliciting the deep emotions and sensory impressions that shape audience beliefs and motivations. It yields rich information about how the concepts relate functionally and emotionally.
Concept Inquiry

Concept Inquiry

This Quantitative online study utilizes proven and rigorous survey design such as objective, balanced questions with meaningful emotional scaling, ideal question ordering, randomization to avoid response bias, as well as proper sampling methods. Through text analytics, meaningful patterns are identified in the data that provide actionable context for evaluating brand positioning, messaging, concepts and validating qualitative emotional findings.
Emotional Validation

Emotional Validation

Co-Creation is designed to guide consumers as they build new ideas for how the client can better deliver on a product or experience. A Brandtrust facilitator guides consumers, grounding them in their emotional experience to positively prime them, then leads them through a series of creative exercises with stimulus designed to evoke insights.


“I think they are a partner that is so good at helping us identify the question behind the question, who are able to dig in and understand something from a human level and holistic perspective. It unlocks a whole new way of thinking. I’m big believer in the science behind it and it’s unique. Their analysis approach, the narrative and the changes how we do insights. There’s nothing like it. The depth is game-changing. The richness of analysis, you walk out and think to yourself, “this is foundational for what I do, this is why I do what I do.”
Director, Insights & Analytics
- Kellogg Company
“I am blown away with the talent there. These aren't just researchers, these are people steeped in behavioral sciences, and it comes through in how they do research. We work with a lot of organizations, but Brandtrust is made up of outstanding thinkers. Brandtrust made sense of the messiness of raw human emotion, and their ability to put that into helpful frameworks is unparalleled.”
Segment Leader
- CPG Company
“The Brandtrust work remains a guiding light for me and others who emotionally connect with our brand.”
Product Planner
- Digital Modeling Guitar + Electronics Manufacturer
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