Get to know individuals, not just markets.

You can only fulfill people’s needs and desires when you truly understand who they are. We conduct design research by immersing ourselves in people’s lives; going where they live, work and play to look at life as it’s actually lived. Armed with this intimate understanding of people’s values, needs and behaviors, we define insights that are directly actionable and help you identify new ways to create value and outsmart the competition.


Thrive’s design research services help you get to know, and get to the bottom of, what your end customers ultimately want. By immersing ourselves in the day-to-day lives of the people who you want to ultimately use your product or service, we are able to offer insights that you can use to help you design and develop products your customers will value over what your competition is offering.


What is Design Research, and Why is it Important?

Simply put, design research is research taken with the specific goal of helping companies design and develop products. While it is similar in some respects to what many companies think of as “market research,” design research seeks to gather the human experience itself, rather than just ideas about the human experience.


Without design research, companies are doing little more than guessing at what people want. Design research enables companies to learn what their customers want, and use that information to create products and services with a higher potential for success in the marketplace.


How Thrive Helps Companies

At Thrive, our design research services take several forms:


Human and Cultural Insight

At the heart of effective design research is understanding what makes your customers (and potential customers tick.) What motivates them? What are their likes and dislikes? What do they want, or need, your product to do for them (even if they don’t know it yet)? The goal of the human and cultural insight stage of design research is to help you understand your end customers, so you can make meaningful connections with them.


We do this through a variety of means, including shadowing and observing customers, conducting online research, surveying customers online, conducting in-depth interviews, and other methods including co-creation sessions, ethnography, cultural probes & diaries, and more.


Insight Activation

Learning about your customers is great, however if you just gather information and don’t actually do anything with it, you haven’t accomplished much. That’s why we help our clients make better, smarter, decisions based on the information gathered. We’ll help you evaluate the information gleaned through our human and cultural insight activities, so you can generate better, actionable, ideas.


Insight activation often includes some combination of the following actions: Voice of the Customer (VOC) analysis, needs-based segmentation, insights confrontation workshops, quantitative insight validation, insights videos, personas, needs hierarchies, problem framing (and re-framing), design requirements & principles, and more.


Insight Definition

When you have amassed a wealth of information about your clients, count on Thrive to help you work through and distill that information to identify what’s critical and helpful, and what’s not. Our services include data mining, VOC analysis, data gap analysis, insights visualization and strategy mapping.


Ethnography for Global Markets

With an increase in companies turning to global markets for new growth, it is critical to have an in-depth understanding of the customers in those markets. Thrive helps clients penetrate international markets by conducting ethnographies, international recruiting, and through simultaneous translation and moderation.


To see how Thrive’s design research services have helped other companies, be sure to check out the case studies at the bottom of this page.


Realize the power of design research for your brand. Contact Thrive today to get started.

  • in-home ethnography

    Human & Cultural Insight

    We strive to understand people in their entirety—what motivates them, how they feel, how they tick. This insight lets brands make more meaningful connections with consumers.

    • Ethnography
    • Cultural Probes & Diaries
    • Shadowing & Observation
    • In-Depth Interviews
    • Online Community Research
    • Co-Creation Sessions
    • Online Surveys
  • insight definition is best done together in a workshop setting

    Insight Activation

    Simply understanding consumers isn't enough. We help brands make smarter decisions and generate better ideas based on real, tangible, strategic insights.

    • Voice of the Customer (VOC) Analysis
    • Insights Confrontation Workshops
    • Quantitative Insight Validation
    • Insights Videos
    • Needs Based Segmentation
    • Personas
    • Needs Hierarchies
    • Problem Framing & Reframe
    • Design Requirements & Principles
  • global ethnographic research provides insight to what different cultures find valuable

    Ethnography for Global Markets

    Today, companies with mid-range products must turn to emerging international markets for new growth. We make it easier to penetrate these markets thanks to ethnographic insights.

    • Ethnography
    • International Recruiting
    • Simultaneous Translation & Moderation
  • insight definition

    Insight Definition

    Sometimes there's plenty of research, but very little actionable insight. Distilling masses of data into the critical ideas and information brands need to drive value is our specialty.

    • Data Mining
    • Voice of the Customer (VOC) Analysis
    • Data Gap Analysis
    • Insights Visualization
    • Strategy Maps

Let's Work Together

Contact Us