HouseMark - Marketing Communications Strategy Review Case Study

The Brief

HouseMark, the leading benchmarking provider for the social housing sector, asked the Escape to assist them in a review of their marketing communications strategy.


Their particular challenge was that although well established and very highly regarded in the sector for their benchmarking subscription service and associated data, the target audience were not so familiar with the HouseMark consultancy offering.

HouseMark needed to find out more about their profile across the sector and based on these findings, check their planning against an unbiased set of recommendations, to help them to effectively market their process improvement services. It was also necessary to carry out the review and deliver these recommendations to HouseMark within a relatively short timescale.

The Approach

Drawing on the knowledge of one of our partner consultants, Primary Business Support, and our own wide experience of both the RSL sector and brand strategy, we were able to rapidly put together a programme that would thoroughly explore both the pros and the cons of the approach that HouseMark were taking. This included the following elements:

  • Review of the current strategy as supplied by the client
  • Review of current off-line and on-line collateral
  • Process review of operational arrangements
  • Telephone survey of current and potential clients
  • Competitor analysis
  • Budget and expenditure review

The Result

An extensive report with prioritised recommendations was produced and presented to the HouseMark internal stakeholder team. The report revealed valuable information regarding audience perceptions of the business. Immediately the team were able to see areas where they could consider change or improvement - including the lack of brand identity for their consultancy offering and how it would benefit from distinct demarcation from the benchmarking subscription service. As with any review of this nature, our initial report should act as a catalyst to change in the marketing output of the organisation. Client awareness and ownership of possible new ways of working is an important first step in that process.

"The review has highlighted a number of areas that will help us to make our range of services better known to the sector."

Samantha McGrady, Deputy Chief Executive, HouseMark