Of all the questions marketers and planners routinely ask consumers, the most impertinent has to be: ‘And why does that matter?’
The rudeness stems in part from the fact those consumers will have diligently answered at least one direct question already. What’s the thing you most look for in a kids’ cereal or indigestion remedy or current account, we ask, in our chosen research setting. And when their answers round on taste, speed of relief and friendly service we duly nod and note and acknowledge.
But we don’t stop there, do we? Because we’re engaged in the marketer’s fetish for ‘laddering up’, and this is merely the dull old bottom rung. We’re not really interested in those primary answers. So we probe further: ‘And why does that matter? Why is that important to you, do you think?’
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