Understand how to use deep cultural insight to unlock powerful strategic solutions

This course is now delivered online as a series of live sessions which fully meet the learning objectives of face-to-face training.

Semiotics is renowned as a method of qualitative analysis and creative projection which helps consumer insight and branding people escape from a cage of conventional thinking: numbers-driven, linear, literal-minded, and supposedly rational. This Advanced Semiotics course is for people who are already aware of the basics of the semiotic approach to culture and communications and who wish to explore higher level and more emergent tools and applications. 

The Masterclass is planned to change with each iteration – presenting a range of advanced perspectives leading methodological development while engaging with how cultural change is currently impacting most dramatically on brands and organisations. New masters, new topics, new interactive opportunities to understand, articulate and transform brand thinking and communication. From a thematic standpoint this year’s Masterclass will engage particularly with ideas of Disruption, ‘The New Normal’, and the implications of these topics for brands.   

The experience of the day will be grounded on practical application of the tools and perspectives explored to one subject of strong topical relevance for brands, working within a matrix of recurring activities.

Learning outcomes

  • Decoding brand, category and cultural meanings
  • Understanding the contexts within which these meanings have to cut through executionally
  • Strategic mapping of competitive spaces, trajectories of change, opportunities for disruptive innovation
  • Engaging with the practicalities of recoding brand meanings to optimize their synergies with cultural and category evolution
  • Exploring the critical frontiers where culture merges with technology and behaviour

Who will benefit

Marketing, insight and design specialists with a grounding in the basics of the semiotic approach; advertising and design agency planners; brand strategists and semiotic practitioners looking for new insight ideas, inspirations, and higher level tools and applications.

Those that already have a grounding in the basics

By agreeing to participate in this training course you also agree to download any software application(s) that are required for the fulfilment of the course.

“Excellent opportunity to walk through some key semiotic theories with a real master practitioner.”

James Woodhead, SpaceDoctors
23-24 November 2016


Tracy Beswick, SpaceDoctors (Freelance)
23-24 November 2016

“A detailed discussion around the world of semiotics.”

Tom Pattison, Added Value
19-20 May 2016

“For those with a basic background/ understanding of semiotics, a wonderfully applicable crash-course in understanding the 'how to' and 'why/for what' of applied semiotics.”

Elisabeth Bennett, Fresh squeezed ideas
19-20 May 2016

“Very good style, open encouragement, commercially acute.”

Christine Daley, Ipsos Mori

“Really patient and flexible about diving deeper into areas the group was most interested in, immensely helpful!”

Yannie Fu, Clear Aisa

Gareth Lewis is Director of Insight at the cultural and creative consultancy Space Doctors where he has worked for the past ten years and where he is closely involved in helping to conceptualise, develop and apply semiotics-led methodological innovations across a range of commercial business contexts. He has particular experience in the areas of semiotics applied to flavour development, cultural archetype modelling as a tool in the creative development process, and new ways of interfacing semiotics with established and emergent research, design and innovation approaches.
Natasha Delliston is a Brand Consultant who has worked extensively with applied semiotics across brand, design and advertising campaigns - both as a client and practitioner. In more recent years, she has worked together with Malcolm Evans to run the MRS Advanced Semiotics Masterclass.
Malcolm is an independent consultant in cultural and semiotic analysis and a leading figure in the application of semiotics to marketing. Having worked with the UK’s first specialist agency Semiotic Solutions and pioneered Added Value’s international Decoder offer, he founded what became a global reference point for best practice in brand semiotics, Space Doctors,where he stayed until 2014. Malcolm has worked for a wide range of clients including P&G, Mercedes, Mastercard, GCK, Unilever, Coca Cola, Tesco, American Express, Vodafone and Unicef. He is also founder of semionaut.net, a global forum for sharing ideas in brand, cultural & sociopolitical semiotics. Malcolm is extensively published academically and in marketing/consumer insight journals. He has won three UK MRS Conference awards (including Best Paper twice) and WPP’s Atticus Grand Prix award.

Additional Information

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