Do your customers really understand you?

We all believe we know what we do and what benefits we offer potential clients. We put a lot of effort into our brand proposition and 'elevator pitch.' But it can be easy to be too close to our business and miss the very fundamentals that we take for granted. I often lecture at universities... Continue Reading →


Does sales need marketing – does marketing need sales?

The Institute of Sales and Marketing Management has recently updated its identity and is now just the 'ISM' and it's not clear which 'M' has been dropped. Hovering over the logo on their website shows the alt tag: 'Institute of Sales and Marketing', while the copyright line on the foot of the same page states... Continue Reading →

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 →

How to make them love your brand – the emotional dimension of branding.

It’s generally accepted that we engage with brands and make choices on two levels: the pragmatic or declarative level and the emotional level. But the importance of the emotional level is often underestimated. Our primary processing of any experience (including a brand experience) is at a visceral level, often described as pre-wired and subconscious; next... Continue Reading →

The seven pillars of export branding

At its core, all branding is the same - however, when a brand moves into the international arena, there are some critical dimensions that must be considered. 1. Language This may seem obvious, but does your brand name translate into your target languages? Even proper names may have an unintended meaning. Don't just think of... 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 →

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 →

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