A boutique, full-service consumer research agency located in Portland, Oregon.


We are a boutique consumer research agency dedicated to minding the gap between your brand and consumers.  Founded in 2005, mind the gap has been designing and executing customized insight projects to a wide range of brands in the U.S. and internationally.  Every project delivers both actionable insights and a clear POV on how the learning can help you positively impact your business and brand. We don’t just tell you what consumers said, we provide advice and guidance to help you make decisions and implement change based on the insights.

Our areas of focus include:

  • Concept, New Product Positioning Research
  • Consumer Understanding, Segmentation, Ethnographies
  • In-store, Event Surveys and Shop-alongs
  • Category Understanding
  • Advertising, Brand Positioning Research


John Knight

portrait_jkPrior to founding mind the gap, John worked for over 8 years at adidas in a variety of roles in the US, Germany, and the Netherlands.  His work at adidas spanned Strategic Planning, e-Commerce, Brand Marketing and he was responsible for establishing the Global Consumer Insights function.  John is passionate about learning from the consumer and combining creative thinking with disciplined analysis.

John graduated from the US Naval Academy with a degree in Systems Engineering. After serving five years in the US Navy he studied at the Wharton School of Business receiving an MBA in Finance. A former avid traveler, he now enjoys relaxing (and more stationary) family time with his wife Stephanie and two daughters, Odessa and Helena.

Shannon Williamson

portrait_swShannon is a Senior Project Manager with extensive market research experience, including work in the sports industry and over 10 years with mind the gap. Having spent time in Business Development and Market Research at adidas in the U.S. and Europe, she is very detail oriented with strengths in questionnaire design and data analysis. Shannon graduated maxima cum laude from University of Portland with a double major in Finance and Spanish. She enjoys working out, hiking, and spending time with her husband and twin daughters.

Maya Volk

portrait_mMaya has been a Project Manager with mind the gap since January of 2018. She enjoys taking consumer narratives and distilling them into actionable insights to meet client objectives. Prior to joining the mind the gap team, Maya worked at the Oregon State University Food Innovation Center in Portland, where she managed recruitment and consumer taste tests for local and national food companies. She graduated magna cum laude from Whitman College with a BA in Sociology. Maya enjoys exploring the Portland restaurant scene, live music, and hosting friends and family for homemade meals.