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Portfolio or Manifesto: What Should a Brand Strategist & Writer Show?

Posted by on Oct 20, 2014 | 0 comments

    In this necessarily hybrid, hyphenated, integrated marketing world, it’s hard to know what a copywriter-creative-director-cum-brand-strategist-and-storyteller should show as a portfolio.  Of course, the marketing world still likes a visualized vita, and yet this one should be more than just show with no tell.  It should reflect a more strategic, less gratuitous, approach to the ultimate creative expression of a brand strategy – and also a more creative take on developing a brand platform. Fortunately, that combination is exactly what I bring: Creativity for the formulation of brand basics and An acute strategic understanding  for the creative expression of brands My downloadable PDF portfolio attempts to encapsulate that crossover of...

Brand Strategy: Arrogance Trumps All?

Posted by on Sep 8, 2014 | 0 comments

  I’ve spent a good deal of time lately with my head in the loftier realms of brand strategy – brand co-creation, purpose-driven branding, that sort of thing, you know – but I have to admit that for every indication good branding might ultimately equal branding for the larger good I run into two negating examples.   Allow me to share my favorite two offenders: The Trump Towers in Chicago and The Restoration Hardware Catalog. Can We Just Comb Over the Sign? Donald Trump – the American tycoon everyone loves to hate, bad hair and all – created quite a stir, and a few more enemies, by installing a huge,...

4 Experts Answer 10 Questions About Purpose-Driven Branding

Posted by on Aug 7, 2014 | 0 comments

  Purpose-driven branding – much like the sometimes conflated arenas of Corporate Social Responsibility, sustainable brands, cause-related marketing and so on – can, to the hard-bitten business person with numbers to hit this quarter, take on the image of (how shall I say this?) philosophical fluff, the stuff of style over bankable substance. To get to the real heart of the matter, I convened four international branding experts for the second edition of The Branding Roundtable and asked them: How do you define purpose? Is purpose primarily a corporate or brand-level concern? Do you invent or discover brand purpose? What are the essential elements of a purpose-driven brand? What...

3-Step Branding Process and Workshop

Posted by on Jun 27, 2014 | 0 comments

    What are the key steps in an effective branding process? How do you convince your management to invest in branding? What is a branding workshop, and how do you run one? As a freelance brand strategist, I get asked questions like these quite frequently.  While I’ve offered a variety of answers in some of my most consistently popular posts, I thought it was about time that I put together a detailed overview, in more convenient form, for sharing.  The result?  A new eBook on the nuts-and-bolts of the branding process, yours to download with my compliments. This easy-to-read, 17-page branding guide draws on my years of experience...

Introducing The Branding Roundtable, No. 1: Brand Co-Creation

Posted by on May 27, 2014 | 0 comments

In addition to my daily work as a freelance brand strategist and writer, I’m also a contributing editor to Branding Magazine.  In that role I have access to many interesting industry experts and have long wanted to develop a venue to allow them more in-depth discussion of key issues around branding, particularly during this time of generally accelerated change in marketing overall. That venue is now open for lively monthly discussions: Introducing The Branding Roundtable, of which I am both creator and moderator. Topic No. 1:  Brand Co-Creation For the inaugural edition, I interviewed top strategists from three leading global branding firms for their views on, and experience with,...

Why Your Brand, and Brand Strategist , Should Think Smaller

Posted by on Apr 23, 2014 | 0 comments

OK, it’s a fairly gratuitous photo for a post on branding – but not completely. Yes, that’s me, your friendly neighborhood brand strategist and writer, sitting behind the wheel of my short-lived 1958 Triumph TR3, some years back. I acknowledge, to all you classic car buffs, that this glorified go kart was hardly your 1954 Jaguar XK120 dream car or even the much more attainable, and substantial, Austin Healy 3000, both of which are still capable of making me drool a bit.  But the TR3 was my dream,  damn it, ever since my brother gave me a model of it when we were kids.  It was a dream well-suited...