You're probably thinking; I am an expert in my field. Why would I pay these guys to research what I already know so much about?
This is a critical phase for us -- the one where we begin to experience the world from your point of view, but with a designer's perspective. We use ethnographic research to immerse ourselves in the social and cultural world of the people who will use the products that we make.
Ethnography is the scientific study of human behaviour; it means taking a "deep dive" into the lives of real people through community outreach, observation sessions, actually participating in the social world of a target market, conducting user feedback sessions and doing statistical analysis.
The full suite of social research services we offer our clients produces an archive of written observation, audio/visual material and physical artifacts, which we analyze to unearth hidden trends, unexpected desires, unvoiced expectations, or unknown user needs. These results are then distilled to create a single narrative description that guides the conceptual design of our products.