Always be branding

Reading Time: 2 minutes Somehow, it just doesn’t feel right. In fact, to some it feels tantamount to suicidal – spending money on your brand at the very point in time when the company feels like it can least afford to invest in “intangibles”. To all those people who’ve thrown that argument at me over the years, you’re right. […]

The new role of marketing

Reading Time: 4 minutes The reason why companies have worked photocopy business plans for so long is because they never thought to work any other way. It just seemed too risky. The rise and rise of producer nations, in the words of Michael Porter, “rivetted attention on implementation”. Watching Japan, then China and India continue to progress, many companies […]

The strategy of radical beauty

Reading Time: 3 minutes Should you climb a mountain because it’s there, or because you believe you have a more than reasonable chance of conquering it? In a commercial setting at least, I’ll plumb for B – because presence alone is not a rational reason to participate. I continue to be intrigued though by the human instinct to believe […]

Brand truth: fascinating insights into what holds true for consumers

Reading Time: 3 minutes We don’t always mean what we say in social situations – nor, it appears, in research. That seems to be the key take-out from recent research (delicious irony!) by Chip Walker and the Y&R research team. In their recently released study, Secrets and Lies, (thanks Hilton for the reference and for the introduction to Chip) […]

What’s your brand advocacy strategy?

Reading Time: 3 minutes Every brand wants advocates. Little wonder. According to Janessa Mangone, people who actively promote your brand can be 50% more influential than the average customer in helping you secure new sales. So perhaps attracting them is something best not left to chance. As we head into the busy Christmas season, here’s some simple but timely […]

A simple guide to being an interesting brand

Reading Time: 2 minutes I’m intrigued by the number of people who insist they don’t believe in marketing, that no-one takes any notice of it and that they don’t have time to engage with brands. Until … they have something they want to tell the world. Then, suddenly, marketing – specifically their marketing – is interesting, exciting and something […]

Building a better business case for brand internally with CFOs

Reading Time: 4 minutes It’s an old bias but a telling one. Finance people accuse marketers of only spending money. Marketers accuse finance teams of only counting it. It’s another re-run of the analytical versus emotive debate yet it has the potential to carry deep bias into decision-making. As Brad VanAuken observed in this article, “I have found that […]

10 ways it pays to be an intermediary brand

Reading Time: 5 minutes Marketers and business writers have been talking for ages about disintermediation – cutting out the middle man – in a bid to achieve more direct and economically efficient relationships. But the battle between Hachette and Amazon reminds us there are still very powerful players mediating between customer and producer.

Brand audiences – talking to the people who don’t buy

Reading Time: 4 minutes Marketers tend to think of their customers only as those people who purchase their brands – and to distinguish them from people who don’t buy any more or who haven’t bought yet. However, in a world where all manner of consumers are connected, it’s important to pay attention to a number of other groups that […]

Why brand management will replace marketing

Reading Time: 3 minutes P&G’s decision to formally end the era of “marketing” at the company and make the shift to brand management may accelerate what amounts to much more than a title change for marketers generally. To me, it could point to a fundamental re-examination of the role of the people responsible for brands.