Brad VanAuken

Branding and the Power of Labels

by Brad VanAuken

Donald Trump is the master of creating pejorative labels that stigmatize his opponents, for instance Crooked Hillary, Crazy Bernie, Little Marco, Lyin’ Ted and ‘Low Energy’ Jeb. The military creates labels that make lethal weapons sound more palatable such as peacekeeper missiles. The Affordable Care Act was carefully named to present its most important promised benefit, […]

Branding and the Power of Labels

by Brad VanAuken

Donald Trump is the master of creating pejorative labels that stigmatize his opponents, for instance Crooked Hillary, Crazy Bernie, Little Marco, Lyin’ Ted and ‘Low Energy’ Jeb. The military creates labels that make lethal weapons sound more palatable such as peacekeeper missiles. The Affordable Care Act was carefully named to present its most important promised benefit, […]

Brands and Non-Functional Benefits

by Brad VanAuken

Luckily, most of us in developed countries have roofs over our heads and are not starving. Many of us have gainful employment, loved ones with whom we share time and a fair number of creature comforts. For us, our basic needs are met without much thought or effort. Which leads me to non-functional needs. Most of […]

Brands and Non-Functional Benefits

by Brad VanAuken

Luckily, most of us in developed countries have roofs over our heads and are not starving. Many of us have gainful employment, loved ones with whom we share time and a fair number of creature comforts. For us, our basic needs are met without much thought or effort. Which leads me to non-functional needs. Most of […]

Brands and Ecosystems

by Brad VanAuken

When studying biology in high school and college, I understood ecosystems in the context of the natural world. A traditional dictionary definition might be “a system or a group of interconnected elements formed by the interaction of a community of organisms with their environment.” Ecosystem has become a buzzword in today’s business world. In this context it […]

Brands and Ecosystems

by Brad VanAuken

When studying biology in high school and college, I understood ecosystems in the context of the natural world. A traditional dictionary definition might be “a system or a group of interconnected elements formed by the interaction of a community of organisms with their environment.” Ecosystem has become a buzzword in today’s business world. In this context it […]

Brand Tonality

by Brad VanAuken

Whether writing an elevator speech or advertising copy, it is important to get the brand’s tonality right. This should be informed by the brand archetype, personality and voice, which are part of the strategic brand positioning exercise. For instance, do you want Tom Bodett (“We’ll leave the light on for you.”), Alister Cooke (PBS Masterpiece Theatre […]

Brand Tonality

by Brad VanAuken

Whether writing an elevator speech or advertising copy, it is important to get the brand’s tonality right. This should be informed by the brand archetype, personality and voice, which are part of the strategic brand positioning exercise. For instance, do you want Tom Bodett (“We’ll leave the light on for you.”), Alister Cooke (PBS Masterpiece Theatre […]

The Creative Brief

by Brad VanAuken

One of the places at which the wheels can come off a rebranding project is between the strategy and creative phases of the project. Often, a company will hire a brand strategy consultant to help it formulate its brand strategy including its brand promise and other brand positioning elements. Brand architecture, distribution and pricing strategies […]

The Creative Brief

by Brad VanAuken

One of the places at which the wheels can come off a rebranding project is between the strategy and creative phases of the project. Often, a company will hire a brand strategy consultant to help it formulate its brand strategy including its brand promise and other brand positioning elements. Brand architecture, distribution and pricing strategies […]

Increasingly Bifurcated Consumer Market

by Brad VanAuken

I have been conducting in-depth customer needs research on behalf of a few different clients as of late. In the process of conducting this research, I have discovered something quite interesting. Customer needs and benefits have become more bifurcated. That is, the needs and benefits are becoming more separated into one of two buckets. I […]

Increasingly Bifurcated Consumer Market

by Brad VanAuken

I have been conducting in-depth customer needs research on behalf of a few different clients as of late. In the process of conducting this research, I have discovered something quite interesting. Customer needs and benefits have become more bifurcated. That is, the needs and benefits are becoming more separated into one of two buckets. I […]

Favorite Blog Posts

by Brad VanAuken

Today, I thought I would share some of my favorite blog posts from our archive. Here they are:Purpose Driven BrandsBrand PositioningBranding and MemoryNine Favorite Brand Management & Marketing BooksNon-Marketing Books for MarketersBest Business Schools for MarketingOnline Brand BuildingThe Brand Management ProcessLeading-Edge Brand Management & MarketingBig Questions for Brand Management & MarketingFor more information on brand […]

Favorite Blog Posts

by Brad VanAuken

Today, I thought I would share some of my favorite blog posts from our archive. Here they are:Purpose Driven BrandsBrand PositioningBranding and MemoryNine Favorite Brand Management & Marketing BooksNon-Marketing Books for MarketersBest Business Schools for MarketingOnline Brand BuildingThe Brand Management ProcessLeading-Edge Brand Management & MarketingBig Questions for Brand Management & MarketingFor more information on brand […]

Simplified Brand Messaging

by Brad VanAuken

Al Reis was the first to state this clearly, “A brand should own one thing in the mind of its customer.” When we work with clients to craft their brand promises, our guidelines stipulate that their brands should only promise one or two relevant differentiated benefits. Any more than that and the brand promise becomes […]

Simplified Brand Messaging

by Brad VanAuken

Al Reis was the first to state this clearly, “A brand should own one thing in the mind of its customer.” When we work with clients to craft their brand promises, our guidelines stipulate that their brands should only promise one or two relevant differentiated benefits. Any more than that and the brand promise becomes […]

Marketers Benefit From Diverse Exposure

by Brad VanAuken

It is important for marketers to understand human motivations and the environments in which they operate. This helps fine tune their intuition. I had previously written a blog post on non-marketing books of potential interest to marketers. Beyond books on various topics, here are the activities and exposures that can help marketers increase their intuition about […]

Marketers Benefit From Diverse Exposure

by Brad VanAuken

It is important for marketers to understand human motivations and the environments in which they operate. This helps fine tune their intuition. I had previously written a blog post on non-marketing books of potential interest to marketers. Beyond books on various topics, here are the activities and exposures that can help marketers increase their intuition about […]

Hollow Brands

by Brad VanAuken

We had an interesting conversation on brands at this morning’s coffee klatch. An unusual topic for us, we talked about men’s clothing brands. It is clear from that conversation that consumers have gotten quite savvy about brands. One person who had previously been very brand conscious shared that a well-known upscale clothing brand had disappointed […]

Hollow Brands

by Brad VanAuken

We had an interesting conversation on brands at this morning’s coffee klatch. An unusual topic for us, we talked about men’s clothing brands. It is clear from that conversation that consumers have gotten quite savvy about brands. One person who had previously been very brand conscious shared that a well-known upscale clothing brand had disappointed […]