If ethnographic research is the study of a group’s culture in their natural environment, Pursenographies™ are the study of the culture of a woman’s purse. Yes, we believe there is actually a “culture” associated with the purse (aka a “handbag” if it’s designer or you live in NYC; or a “pocketbook” if you were born before 1935)—a culture full of female insights and brand opportunities. As one woman put it,
“My purse is my mobile home with leather handles.”
In conducting Pursenographies™ we spend time with women one-on-one going inside her purse and into her life. We go beyond the obvious of inventorying the contents and instead ask insight-provoking questions to get to the back-story, the tension and paradox of what is there (and what is not). Insights are unearthed and product innovations reveal themselves.
Designing products based on unmet “portable” needs of women represent completely incremental business opportunities. Just a decade ago, who could have imagined detergent having a role in a purse? Now look at the success of Tide-to-Go. There are approximately 90 million purses for your brand to have a place in—-are you ready?