James Cragg (former business director at Ogilvy), Patrick Fagan (former psychologist at Cambridge Analytica), and Dan Thwaites (former senior strategist at Karmarama) have joined to create a behavioural science company called Capuchin.
The brand has been named after the capuchin monkey, a species subjected to regular behavioural experiments that have illustrated the power of the primate brain in decision-making.
The practice will work with businesses to help them understand their clients and
measurably change behaviour
through data and
. The business has described its offering as “scientific thinking for irrational minds.”
Thwaites said: “Organisations are faced with managing communications to more people, more frequently, through more channels, and the risk of misunderstanding grows. However smart the message delivery technology, it’s still a human who decides whether, or not, to buy. Capuchin provides a way to apply the science of the human mind in a way that’s as rigorous as a technology stack.”
Fagan also addressed the scandal of his former employer Cambridge Analytica, which used a similar data-meets-
Fagan said the scandal was part of the reason why Capuchin was committed to empathy by incorporating subconscious intuition into the business’ approach.
“The Cambridge Analytica approach combined behavioural science and data science – an effective tool that an increasing number of brands are using to optimise their messaging and conversion funnel with significant, measurable results. The company’s political leaning, certain misunderstandings and misinformation about what data it used, how and for whom has distracted from what is surely a critical issue for everyone – the need for us all to have transparency and control when it comes to our data. Most of us certainly do care about privacy, yet we just do not have the time, effort of brainpower to read all the T&Cs, nor the understanding of data science to properly consent.
“Fortunately, sunlight is the best disinfectant and as long as freedom of data, information and speech exist on the internet, bad business practices will be exposed and bad businesses won’t survive.”
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