In consumer research, consumers are often asked explicitly what they think, for example about a certain product, advertisement or a specific brand. This method of measurement is mainly suitable if the aim is to discover what people think consciously about these subjects.
Most brand and communication models also primarily assume rational behaviour. Important thinkers such as Dijksterhuis and Kahneman (author of ‘Ons feilbare denken’ [Eng. version 'Thinking, Fast and Slow'] demonstrates that people do not think as rationally as they think they do. Our brain has been trained to challenge our 'automatic' thinking when taking decisions as often as possible. Scientific research however has shown that only 10% of our decisions are taken consciously and rationally. The subconscious plays a major role in imaging and the idea that the consumer is a rational decision maker is outdated. For example, a consumer may have subconscious positive associations which he is not aware of when answering a specific question.. Or he may display certain behaviour based on habit without being aware of it.
Certainly where issues such as experience, atmosphere, feelings and emotional associations for brands or communications are concerned, it is important to address subconscious processes. To analyse this properly, we adopt techniques which pay sufficient attention to 'the subconscious' in all of our research. We test this using implicit measurement methods. Specifically, these methods do not give respondents the opportunity to substantiate responses or actions cognitively and to respond based only on conscious processes. This gives us the purest possible impression of the position the brand occupies in the mind of the respondent or the emotional effect of a communication message.. We utilise this in all of our qualitative and quantitative research, both online and offline.
More information about implicit measurement and Blauw's involvement?