Churchill said, "However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results," and it seems like good advice, particularly when every shop seems to have one method or another they talk up.

But very few stop, look back, and question actual marketplace results to see if they were victorious in executing the identified strategies. Because when it comes to creating brand strategies, there's only one question that really needs a satisfactory answer: What happened? "The research predicted something and then… what happened?"

As 2011 ended Brand Keys followed Mr. Churchill's advice and examined how closely what we said during the year in our regular Warc blog actually matched market results.

We invite you to listen to What Happened? Successful Strategies, Marketing Misdeeds, and the Brands That Loved Them, this year's collection of 15 recordings – true stories that are a look back at our columns on categories from social networking to smart phones, banks to beer, and brands from Ford to Facebook, and Purina to Pizza Hut, and see if what we said would happen, did happen.

Ben Franklin said, "Well done is better than well said." Or as brands might suggest to their research providers and strategy consultants, "Don't talk the talk if you can't walk the walk."

Because research 'talk' that matches up with what actually happens in the marketplace is always a real victory for a brand.