Steve Nollau

Steve Nollau: Friendship and Creative Insight

Steve Nollau President and Chief Strategy Officer of Brädo Creative Insight. He co-founded the company with his best friend, Bob Cuneo, who serves as President and Chief Creative Officer. Together, they have built one of the best market research agencies in the world.

Before Steve Nollau and Bob Cuneo co-founded Brädo Creative Insight, they both worked in the corporate side of advertising, Marketing and research.  The two had long spoken of going into business together. Common knowledge says that going into business can ruin even great friendships; they both feared that it could do just that so they resisted the temptation for many years. In 2002, however, they decided it was time to try.

Instead of destroying their friendship, Brädo Creative Insight has made their friendship even stronger. When speaking of the business and his friendship with Cuneo, Nollau said “It’s really been an incredible run for both the business and our friendship . . . we’re having a great time doing what we love.”

Both Nollau and Cuneo have grown exponentially since co-founding Brädo Creative Insight. They have created a market research agency that inspires rather than informs.  They have resurrected insight from a loosely identified idea that included everything from simple observations to quotes from a focus group, and successfully redefined it to help clients from around the world thrive. And they’ve done it all while remaining best friends.

Today, Brädo Creative Insight isn’t just two guys and a part-time receptionist, as it was in 2002. It’s now a company of almost 50 employees, including Steve Nollau and Bob Cuneo, and every one of them is passionate about what they do and why they do it. This wouldn’t be possible without a company culture that focuses not just on market research, but on creativity, insight, inspiration and most importantly, friendship.

Steve Nollau: Global Marketing
Steve Nollau

Steve Nollau Shared Aweosme Tips for Global Marketing

Steve Nollau is a co-owner of Brädo Creative Insight, a St. Louis-based Strategic Marketing Research Agency. He serves as the firm’s President and Chief Strategy Officer.

Marketers, as he knows, are often on the front lines of a company’s expansion into global markets. Brädo has executed successful research studies in more than twenty-five international markets on every continent except, they whimsically note, for Antarctica. Most of their global assignments span multiple cities.

Steve Nollau: Global Marketing

Brädo Creative Insight, Steve Nollau says, has developed strong working relationships with the top facilities, recruiters, moderators and translation services, all around the world, as in the case of China, where they have their own team ready to help clients understand that complex market.

Steve Nollau says that sixty percent of Brädo Creative Insight’s business comes from international projects. Their work has taken them to more than sixty cities and twenty-five different countries. The company employs more than forty people, and have sales in excess of ten million dollars annually.

Also Read: Steve Nollau: Creative Epiphanies


Steve Nollau- Co-Owner of  Brädo Creative Insight Creative Insight, a strategic marketing research agency
Chief Strategy Officer, Steve Nollau

Steve Nollau- Co-Owner of  Brädo Creative Insight – A Strategic Marketing Research Agency

Steve Nollau is the co-owner of Brädo Creative Insight, a strategic marketing research agency and consultancy he runs with his best friend in St. Louis, Missouri.

Steve Nollau- Co-Owner of  Brädo Creative Insight Creative Insight, a strategic marketing research agency

Brädo’s success, Steve Nollau says, is directly attributable to the non-traditional nature of its research processes. “What we deal in is creative insight,” he explains. “And what better way to manifest a creative insight than to be able to actually see, in physical format that idea is. And that’s what the Innovation Lab provides us – that [was] simply not possible before.”

Steve Nollau- Co-Owner of  Brädo Creative Insight Creative Insight, a strategic marketing research agency

The Brädo Innovation LabÔ is a one-of-a-kind, mobile facility equipped with everything needed to promote innovation and create prototypes. It uses everything from low-fidelity materials such as clay or pipe cleaners, to state-of-the-art equipment like 3D printers, laser cutters, modeling software and food extruders to facilitate front-end innovation.

Innovation is central to the Brädo philosophy. Most attempts at innovation are driven by a reaction to a company’s competition, which Brädo calls “limping into innovation.” That can be a good starting point, and sometimes even produce good ideas, but more often than not the results are less than optimal. The solution is insight, and charging into innovation. Brands that understand what consumer values and needs really are, are the ones that are going to win.

Steve Nollau has many years of experience in advertising, marketing and brand strategy. He also understands front line marketing and customer engagement.


Steve Nollau

Steve Nollau: Non-Traditional Research

Steve Nollau spent the first part of his career in the world of advertising, marketing, and brand strategy. That experience has provided him with a broad and deep understanding of the industry, which informs him in his role as President and Chief Strategy Officer of Brädo Creative Insight.

Steve Nollau the co-owner of the St. Louis, Missouri-based Strategic Marketing Research Agency and Consultancy, which he formed with his best friend in 2002. “We started Brädo with just the two of us,” he recalls, “and a part time receptionist.” At first, Steve Nollau adds, the two of them did everything, but the business has grown to employ more than forty people and have sales of more than ten million dollars a year.

“Brädo’s success is directly attributable to the non-traditional nature of our research processes, and the quality and dedication of our people,” Steve Nollau says. “No one in the company is a classically trained researcher. Most of our people come from the ad agency world.”

Central to the Brädo approach is innovation, and this is what sets them apart from other marketing research agencies. Creative Insight, he explains, is the difference between ideas that can be acted upon, and those that spark a truly creative epiphany. Creative Insight fosters intuition for new product development and creative executions.

Steve Nollau says that the great thing about Brädo is that he gets to work with the most talented, passionate, and fun loving people that he has ever been around. As an added bonus, he calls his workplace the coolest office space he has ever had.

Follow    Steve Nollau at Twitter profile   to know more.

Steve Nollau

Steve Nollau – Shopper Insights

Steve Nollau is the President and Chief Strategy Officer at Brädo Creative Insight, a strategic marketing research agency of which he is co-owner.”

The St. Louis-based agency, he says, is made up of Creative Strategists, by which he means people of diverse creative backgrounds. Their specialties include shopper insights, which identifies and evaluates such matters as the shopping experience, brand loyalty, and purchasing behavior of consumers. Brädo Creative Insight aims to help its clients maximize closure, transcend price and private label, earn retailer support, and build shopper affinity.

The company has four specific shopper insight processes:

Values Link Retail
Emotional Mapping
Touchpoint Maximizer
P2P Voice Check

Values Link® Retail identifies the optimum point of emotional appeal that products or services have with consumers. It’s what the company calls the “sweet spot,” the place where customer, retailer and brand values are in alignment, and shopper affinity and loyalty thrives.

Emotional Mapping identifies the emotional states shoppers have, and how they can fluctuate, along the path to purchase. Too often ignored, Brädo Creative Insight says that by understanding and speaking to these fluctuating emotions, clients can maximize their brand’s voice, and result in closed sales.

Steve Nollau has many years of experience in advertising, marketing, and brand strategy. As the designer and developer of his own food service concept, he also understands and appreciates front line marketing. He is a graduate of the University of Missouri, where he earned a degree in journalism.

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