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We do customer acquisition, retention & development.

We create new business growth.

We maximise customer value. 

About us


Founded in 1994, we are a full service customer marketing and market insights consultancy.

We aren't going to list all our credentials, but we have won major awards for our work. Above all, we believe that to be most effective we need to have walked in the shoes of our clients. In our experience, advice and research have much more chance of creating real impacts when they are matched with corporate experience, acumen, pragmatism and political awareness. Those things we have, in spades. 

Our management team and associates have all succeeded in senior global corporate roles. We have ex Global Heads of Marketing, Insight, Customer and Distributor Experience, Digital Marketing, Customer In-force and Distribution management.


That's not to say that we know better than you because 'we've been there, done it'. Quite the reverse. But we will bend over backwards to 'get' your context and help you achieve measurable, demonstrable success. We will push boundaries, but we will do it sensibly and with real experience of navigating the choppy waters of corporate structures at executive level.​

We are an owner managed company. We don't spend our clients' money on expensive offices in central city locations, to impress. We are confident that our performance will do that. We truly care about our clients' successes. We will immerse ourselves in your project to understand what 'good' looks like and advise upon what is realistically achievable. ​

​Our overarching aim is to build long term 'trusted partner' relationships with our clients based upon outstanding performance and demonstrable project ROI.  We believe that 'if it can't be measured, it can't be managed' and at the heart of our approach lies the imperative of generating actionable insights and commercially viable and measurable solutions.

If we have a USP, it is that when you engage us you know for sure you are getting senior and experienced people who can identify with the challenges you face within your own corporate structure.  We know what we're doing. We have learned at the coal face. That's our difference.

Our clients include;

Zurich PLC, AXA PLC, Friends Provident PLC, Royal & Sun Alliance PLC, Aviva PLC, Zurich International Life,  Sesame, Openwork, Marks and Spencer PLC, The Home Office, HM Treasury, Unilever PLC, The Chartered Insurance Institute, The Fire Service, The British Army, Navy and Royal Air Force,  The National Health Service.....and many more



We will help you grow your profitability through identifying and understanding your target customer and blending the best of cutting edge digital insight and journey mapping techniques with traditional methodologies, to identify and drive value.

We embrace a design thinking approach and bring to bear a wealth of experience working in large global corporates and top 5 consultancies to pragmatically and cost effectively drive the profitable acquisition, retention and development of your customers.

We go beyond just cutting edge digital research. We answer the big 'so what' questions that at the intersection between people, technology and big data will drive revenue, at scale.

Whether it is helping you to define your target customer segment, or refine and implement their ideal journey, drive value out of an in-force book through a data based retention, cross or upsell programme, or inform your marketing automation programme, for us it is about providing insights and advice that drive measurable customer acquisition, retention & development

"In 2020 the competitive battleground will be customer experience. The customer journey will take precedence"


Customer Listening and Understanding


We cover a wide range of insight challenges. From audience understanding, proposition development, user experience and journey mapping, our clients' audiences include not only customers and prospects but also distributors and, increasingly, staff.


We can give you 'always on', 24/7 conversations with your desired audience and can go deep, broad, or both. You will, for example, be amazed at how rich a return on-line community research will bring. 

However, we start no project with one methodology or approach in mind. Each client and project is different and we simply meld the best of the best together to suit.

Customer Experience & Journey Mapping


Let us help you to design your customers' ideal experience. Which touch points (and hence cost) should you dial up. Which can you safely and cost effectively dial down.

This is a science, not guesswork. We have vast experience of identifying profitable customer segments and designing and implementing outstanding and differentiating customer experiences for them.  


As with all our projects, we start with the end in mind. We aim for actionable results which, when implemented, provide measurable outcomes across customer acquisition, development and retention. 

Global Insights, CEX consultancy and in-force management

Merlin specialises in running multi-country, cross border and global research studies. Listing amongst our team an ex-Global Head of Customer Insight & Experience, a Global CMO and a Global Head of In Force Management for Fortune 500 companies, we are used to working cross border and at scale.

Whether it is sensitive M&A discovery work, market entry assessment studies, longitudinal brand, service or performance studies, building a true customer marketing function or flexing your in force book, we have the knowledge and experience to shape your project to produce actionable results, and drive profitable, sustainable growth.


Europe, Middle East & Africa

Tel: +44 7855 748680


USA & Far East
Far East: +852 5702 9957
USA: +1 321 228 5933
Global Consultancy Director
Tel: +44 7986 033089

Let's chat...


Head Office:

Merlin Communications Ltd. Knightswood House, Cirencester, GL7 7LE, U.K.

For any general inquiries, please fill in the following contact form:

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