Sunday , 18 November 2018
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What does a strategist do?

Having just come back from an all-family get together I have inevitably had to answer the ‘so what does a strategist do?’ question.

What does a strategist do?My mum knows I am in ‘marketing’ but for years she thought I was in advertising as that’s the only ‘marketing’ that she knows… I have gently been trying to update and educate her as to the nuances of different ‘marketing’ niches but to no avail.
It made me readdress how I talk about my strategy consultancy’s service offer on my site, here’s how I answered and what I subsequently wrote over at GD | Inspires

Strategic design consultant

As with any good strategist, my offer is as broad as my experience, and is continually expanding.

My core role fits into three buckets:

  1. Research designer & enactor
  2. Research sense-maker
  3. Post-research enabler

Here’s a sample of what I can do for you, but please bear in mind that ‘activities’ and needs change on a project by project basis…

Business strategy & management

  • Opportunity analysis
  • Proposition development
  • Trend analysis
  • Research (primary and secondary)
  • Strategic review of existing research to unearth insight
  • Employee and stakeholder engagement & training

Brand strategy & positioning

  • Strategy offer definition for your agency
  • Insight identification
  • Benchmarking
  • Brand research
  • Brand management
  • Brand positioning
  • Brand architecture and portfolio planning
  • Brand, sub-brand & product naming
  • Shopper journey mapping

Brand identity & design implementation

  • Visual positioning
  • Brand identity development
  • Design management
  • Creative brief writing
  • Tone of voice guidance
  • Copywriting

Pitch building (64% success rate over the last five years)

  • Pitch support
  • Deck construction / writing


  • Workshop facilitation
  • Innovation workshops
  • Naming workshops
  • Agenda design
  • Client engagement
  • Exercise design
Get in touch to discuss any of these or projects that I can help by emailing

Have I missed anything? How do you answer the what does a strategist do question?

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About GregDillon

Greg is the founder of strategy consultancy GD | Inspires and spends his days strategising for various design agencies and clients around the world - see more at He is also a prolific entrepreneur having launched - a website aimed at giving advice and insight to new, existing and veteran freelancers as well as commenting on all things strategic. Feel free to email him at: or follow on Twitter @StratTalking

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