MRS Brand Research Conference: Consumer insight strategies that build, sustain and drive brands

Judie Lannon

Chaired by the ever-ebullient Roy Langmaid, the contributions at the MRS Brand Research Conference, held in London in June 2011, looked at brands and branding - and demonstrated that the subject is ever-amenable to fresh insights and new research approaches.

The social sciences were well represented,with Langmaid kicking off the day referencing the psychologist John Bowlby, who said that the roots of branding lie in the human psyche's need for attachments - and thus branding is collusion between individuals and manufacturers with the objective of maximizing satisfaction for both parties.

Keynote: Radically changing how we think about brands - Mark Earls, Herd

The thesis of Mark Earls' book Herd (made even more explicit in the title of his next book 'I'll have what she's having') is that human behaviour should be seen primarily as a social act. We act in a social context, we copy others, and we are constantly influenced by social connections.