How to manage the brand perception-gap.

Brands are about perceptions rather than reality, because they are primarily concerned with emotion more than logic. Perceptions and attributions may be constructed from early experiences of a brand or by received information. Often, that information is also emotionally constructed. It may have been channelled through peer groups, respected friends or colleagues, or sympathetic media. Large... Continue Reading →

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Tesco and five kinds of brand damage.

Financial, sales-revenue and profit reversals usually correlate with brand damage, though not necessarily to a serious extent. The public is often sympathetic to market conditions and we have seen many retailers struggling through, without permanent brand damage. However some forms of damage can be more serious and enduring, and recently we have seen poor Tesco... Continue Reading →

Will the co-op’s problems lead to long term brand damage?

Sadly, we have seen it all before, commercial blunders and personal... well, shall we say, misjudgments. Usually brands are stronger than people imagine and can come out of such mire with little more than a few bruises to the ego and a little embarrassment. The public understand that the brand is not embodied in an... Continue Reading →

Brand lessons from Starbucks, Amazon, Google et al.

Lesson #1: The brand is everyone's responsibility including the CFO. The recent furore and public backlash at brands which take UK tax avoidance to the extreme was wholly predictable, and avoidable. But how many organisations involve their senior financial people in brand management - how many CFO's see the brand as part of their responsibility?... Continue Reading →

Online brands – opportunity or threat for pack design?

With more sales moving online do we have to rethink the role of pack design - will it become a less important part of the marketing mix? 'Phenomenal' growth - that's IGD's prediction for online grocery shopping (The Grocer). Online sales growth is outstripping growth through stores, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS)’s Retail Sales... Continue Reading →

What will do the Google brand most damage – profit slump or communications bungling?

Share trading in Google was suspended for a while when its third-quarter results were published early by mistake. The results revealed a 20% profit slump, but what was the biggest potential long-term damage to the brand - the figures or the bungling? Business results matter, but all companies have ups and downs. Many traditional media... Continue Reading →

How to learn from what Toyota learned.

Toyota have had another recall issue to come to grips with. This should be no big deal. Most manufacturers have a number of these each year. Toyota's always seem to come under a rather brighter spotlight which may be a reflection upon their reputation for process, reliability and build-quality. So, when an issue arrises, the... Continue Reading →

Five key characteristics of great brand leaders.

What is the defining characteristic of great brands - large or small? It is brand leadership. They have strong, committed and unwavering direction. Great brand leaders come in all shapes and sizes from Henry Ford to Richard Branson or Steve Jobs. But they all share some key qualities. (1) Vision A clear view ahead and... Continue Reading →

Make the most of the five ‘E’s of branding.

Brand experience is all about the interaction between the brand and its public. While we all remember the four 'P's of the marketing mix (though I've seen up to 11 at the last count!) - the crucial dimensions of brand interaction are the five 'E's. Engagement - interactions need engagement. The more people engage the... Continue Reading →

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