What is the human experience of a brand?

We love that you’re already asking questions.

At TBD, we’re motivated to remove bias from market research and build brands that are free to experiment. Inquire. Investigate. Because a competitive brand advantage is only achieved when a daring vision embraces the unknown.

Work with us.

Learn how TBD can help your brand ask the market research questions that actually matter to your audience.

Work with us

Join us.

Join the TBD community and participate in human-centered research that transforms the brands of today — and tomorrow.

Join the community
Seek. Study. Shift.
Seek. Study. Shift.
Seek. Study. Shift.
What’s in a name?

We think outside the (sand)box.

Market insights from TBD create a proving ground for brands.

We eliminate risk and encourage the freedom to ask previously unaskable questions. After answers are uncovered, our discoveries are made available to the community as open-source intelligence. It’s market research that unleashes extraordinary freedom. And everyone’s welcome on the playground.

Join Us

We answer the human questions that data just can’t. By combining analytics, voice, action, and thought into simple, holistic, and open-source intelligence available to all. Because every data point represents a story, a journey, and a person.

Our thoughtful process.

Seek. Study. Shift.

The process is simple.

Just five steps. But these steps don’t walk — they run toward answers, insights, and problems that can be solved with brand analysis and foresight.

1 Come to the TBD team with a question.
2 We formulate a plan.
3 We reach out to the TBD community and execute the plan.
4 We analyze the data.
5 We build out a real-world, shareable analysis for both client and community.
Working alongside TBD results in a shift. We might uncover a new approach that kindly shows an old strategy where to find the door. Or our recommendations might be subtle. In every case, the work of TBD is thoughtful and purposeful.


What is TBD?

TBD is an Ann Arbor-based market research project designed to provide an unbounded, brandless experience to unveil customer voice in the form of open-source intelligence. We are not an agency or marketing firm. We are a collective built to uncover true brand essence through an unbranded approach.

Why “TBD”?

Oftentimes, the outcome of a brand’s actions are “to be determined.” When your brand faces the crossroads of subjectivity and uncertainty, we explore an undiscovered direction. We use tailored data to determine what was previously unknown. We pursue creative knowledge to determine a path forward.

Who can request the services of TBD?

Any brand looking to discover the root of their purpose — and why that purpose might not be currently evident to customers.

What types of questions might a client ask TBD to answer?
  • What’s in a product name?
  • Why do certain packaging elements resonate more?
  • What aspects of a logo evoke the most emotional resonance?
  • Our brand is popular, but do we understand every detail we portray to the world?
  • Any question that can have a measurable impact on a successful brand.
How do TBD community members contribute to the movement?

Outside of the TBD team is the all-important TBD community. These stakeholders drive our research endeavors after a client has expressed their branding questions. Depending on the client, the TBD community may offer their insights through focus groups, survey research, user experience testing, and more. No matter how data collection takes place, TBD community members will be unaware of the client request and the client itself. This ensures a completely unbranded experience that yields transformative, unbiased data. Compensation is provided for those who participate. A time commitment estimate will be readily available before participation. Data collection may take place in person or virtually.

How are TBD findings made public?

Open-source intelligence is at the heart of TBD. Once research and analysis are complete, our findings will be made public at thinktbd.com in the form of a comprehensive report. Updates will also be posted on our social media channels @thinktbd.

I don’t ask any of these questions frequently.

Let’s start a conversation. Send us a message at info@thinktbd.com.

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The world of market research deserves explorers. Experimenters. People who approach brand challenges by asking, “Why?”

Use this form to request services and market insights from the TBD team or contribute directly to our movement through human-centered research. We look forward to hearing from you. (*Required fields)

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Seek. Study. Shift.