The mission of the Intent Lab is to uncover the motivation behind consumers purchase behavior and deliver influential marketplace insights to strengthen brand engagement.

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DSI Remarketing Spotlight (2019): Download the Findings

DSI Visual Search Spotlight (2018): Download the Findings

DSI Voice Assistant Spotlight (2018): Download the Findings

New Intent Lab Study Proves That Search Query Language Is a Behavioral Insights Machine

The study finds that searchers with high purchase intent are 180% more likely to click on results with concrete words like “shop,” while searchers with browsing intent are 20% more likely to click on results with abstract words, like “best”

Download the Search as a Behavioral Insights Machine Report

Download the Relationship between Top-Funnel Search Activities and CPG Purchase White Paper

Intent Lab is a research unit created by Performics and Northwestern University.

Our purpose is to find new ways to strengthen brands through an improved understanding of how consumer decisions are made and how brand engagement can be improved.

Intent Lab research will enable brands to relentlessly optimize against consumer intent to drive measurable performance: Visibility. Relevancy. Conversion. Sales. ROI.

Understanding Intent Means Understanding How Consumers Decide at every stage of their journey

Consumer intent is the single largest performance marketing variable.

  • Intent shapes our search queries.
  • Intent dictates our purchase paths.
  • Intent mediates meaningful interactions with brands, regardless of channel, media, or content type.

intent-lab_image135x135_01 The Intent Lab will regularly produce customized research for brands and technology platforms.

These studies will be formulated to test hypotheses significant to each individual brand or platform, but will all revolve around uncovering and activating consumer intent during the pathway to purchase. They will utilize varied research methodologies and data sources.

intent-lab_image135x135_02In every intent moment, consumers are flooded with digital brand messages and interactions, some that are enabling and empowering, some that are intrusive and annoying.

The Digital Satisfaction Index™ (DSI) is the new industry standard identifying drivers of digital consumer satisfaction on a quarterly basis across a variety of markets and verticals. Marketers can use the DSI learnings to create better consumer experiences and interactions, ultimately driving engagement and converting intent into revenue.

Check out the Q3 2016 and Q4 2016 report!


Through the Intent Lab, we aim to uncover insights that will arm brands with a new level of understanding that is critical to establishing meaningful consumer connections and ensuring relevance across the path-to-purchase; ultimately influencing choice and motivating purchase.

Steering Committee and Research Team

Frank Mulhern
Associate Dean, Department Chair and Professor of Integrated Marketing Communications, Northwestern University Medill School

Marshall Kohr
Director, Integrated Marketing Communications Program, Northwestern University Medill School

Ashlee Humphries
Associate Professor and Research Lead, Northwestern University Medill School

Mathew Isaac
Professor of Marketing, Seattle University

Craig Greenfield
Chief Operating Officer, Performics Worldwide

Joe Reinstein
Global Growth Officer, Performics

Esteban Ribero
SVP Planning & Insights, Performics

Burcu Agma
Group Account Director, Planning & Insights, Performics

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