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Research is my passion

As a graduate of Miami Ad School, it is an absolute honor to give back through sharing my own knowledge and experience with brand-planning students. Having taught at both the San Francisco and Miami locations, I enjoy educating students on the importance of qualitative research and emphasize that there is more to uncover beyond the just numerical data.  Throughout my course, I ensure every student learns methodologies for all types of projects, especially for clients who have a low budget and require a quick turn-around. From interview intercepts to ethnographies, students become qualitative experts in putting together a research proposal, discussion guide and recruiting. 


Mariano’s Grocery Store

Chicagoland grocer, Mariano’s, was facing a decline in customers as more people were ordering groceries online or visiting emerging competitors, like Whole Foods, who moved into the area. Instead of just observing what Mariano’s meant to shoppers’ grocery needs, we wanted to dig deeper into how the brand could fit into their lifestyles. With just a few days and no budget for recruiting, I was able to find and interview target shoppers to uncover how Mariano’s could better serve them, thoroughly.



While pitching NBA2K, we were tasked with finding a way to increase sales for a customer base that was already tapped out. To see how we could cross over the sports gaming threshold, we wanted to research what non-sports gamers look for in video games and why they didn’t play sport video games. Because we were working around a small budget and a four-day window, we had to work on our toes to recruit gamers across Los Angeles. By posting an ad on Craigslist, we successfully hard-core gamers for focus groups conducted in our agency. Beyond groups, we wanted to observe gamers in their natural habitat of playing. We went into the homes of gamers to conduct ethnographies while they gammed to uncover deeper insights. The results of our research lead us to a powerful strategy that won the NBA2K business, and consequently had the best sales year in the brand’s fifteen-year franchise history.



Applebee’s had no problem retaining its current customers but needed to extend that love for the brand beyond its walls. What better way to understand why people love the brand than to intercept them at the dinner table and talk all things Applebee’s. We went to store locations across the country to bring customers to life beyond a traditional segmentation report. The results helped inspire creative work and brand building to new levels with younger audiences that had ignored previous brand messaging.

ICF Next

Mariano’s Intercepts

We needed to understand what made Mariano’s stand out amongst the vast number of grocery store and delivery options in the Chicagoland area. Knowing that most people attend multiple grocery stores to complete their shopping lists, we wanted to understand at the point-of-sale what drove their choice to visit Mariano’s. Working with just a couple of hours to work with, we set up directly outside of the store to observe insights about the Mariano’s experience immediately after purchase.


Persona Outline

Segmentation Studies

Journey Maps


Media Demographics


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