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Leeds agency ResearchBods is helping brands get closer to customers

Robin Hilton and Jonathan Clough.
Robin Hilton and Jonathan Clough.

Jonathan Clough and Robin Hilton, co-founders and directors at Leeds-based ResearchBods, write for Digital City about how the use of technology can create customer closeness.

We’ve always believed that a forward-thinking attitude is what keeps the momentum going for any business.

Constantly thinking ‘what should we do next?’, ‘what improvements can we make?’, and ultimately ‘how can we make things better for our clients and their customers?’

Working together with insight professionals, data scientists, software developers, designers and more, we’re constantly evolving what we do.

We’ve managed to build a very talented team of people around us to help answer all those questions and solve ongoing challenges.

We don’t think of ourselves as a traditional market research agency. We have a strong focus on technology and software development to help brands get closer to their customers.

The digital landscape has moved on so much and customers are more savvy than ever before.

Social media has exploded as a forum to post good and bad feedback. Fully embracing and encouraging customer feedback is where brands will win in the long run.

For this reason, we position ourselves as ‘the customer agency’, because the customer is at the centre of everything we do.

We partner with brands, agencies and organisations to deliver meaningful customer data and intelligence.

By creating a unique data relationship with customers, we provide the full view on where they are, what they do and how they think.

With data protection being a hot topic right now, it’s important to stress our approach is completely opt-in, safe and secure.

Take our insight communities, for example, which we design, build and manage for clients.

These online platforms allow brands to create a two-way relationship with their customers, where they can sign up and voice their opinion.

Customers can feed back instantly on new products, services and emerging trends, take part in surveys and upload photos and videos.

This real-time feedback is invaluable to brands, allowing them to gain a deeper understanding of their audience.

We also recruit and manage our own online access panel called SurveyBods, with over 300,000 registered panellists in the UK alone.

This way, brands can go beyond their own customers, tapping into feedback from national representative samples or even a competitor’s customers.

Working with businesses such as Asda and YBS who are headquartered in Yorkshire is fantastic, and it’s great to be part of a region where technology is thriving.

We’ve found that you don’t need to be based in London to service big name clients, though.

We’re proud to work with large businesses across a wide range of sectors, including Costa, O2, Coca-Cola and LV=.

We’re seeing increased demand for these sophisticated research solutions, with a 55 per cent growth in our revenue from the same period last year.

Looking ahead to next year, there are huge opportunities for brands who put the customer at the core of their strategy.

From that perspective, it’s exciting to be a customer too, knowing that your opinion could help shape the future of brands.