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Product Management Library of Knowledge


The 3 Things You Need to Know About Creating a Brand Story

Many companies believe their brand story is merely a slogan or the history of their business. While these two things can certainly be part of your brand story, the narrative should encompass quite a bit more. Your brand story should...

The Heart And Core Of Super Customer Experience

Think of the customer's view at every moment from design of products and services to the sales and follow-up care. What will their reaction be? Let this approach guide all your design efforts. Let it shape your redesigns to keep pace with a changing customer demographic. Remember, the customer experience is from the outside in to your company -- not from the inside out!

Positioning: When knowing too much is a liability

Properly positioning a company and its products is a critical factor for success. When a solution just can not seem to get traction in the market, often the problem is not the product; it is how it is positioned.

Once Upon a Time, There Was a Wonderful Brand

By Martin Lindstrom
The year was 1895. King Camp (his real name) stood before his shaving mirror, as he'd done many times before. A new thought occurred to him. His cut-throat razor was performing its job as well as usual, but so little of the blade was actually used in the shaving process. King Camp wondered about a new type of blade, one practically all edge. He thought about housing it in a device that would make shaving cuts and accidents nearly impossible. Then, he thought about making it disposable. If he could make a blade that was thin, flat, efficient, cheap, and disposable... did I neglect to mention King Camp's surname was Gillette?

Place, space, and everything in between: The use of Proxemics in Branding

By Gavin Johnston, Two West Chief Anthropologist

Over the years the world of marketing and branding has come a long way in understanding how color and images combine to shape the brand experience, and the importance of considering these points when dealing with an array of cultural norms and expectations. We know red is an auspicious color in China, but is often interpreted as being too aggressive and agitating in the US. We know that choosing symbolically discordant images and colors can have a strong impact on the viewers psyche.

Persuasion in the Marketplace; Belonging to the Brand

Persuasion is the act of changing an individual's attitude or belief as a result of receiving a message. This is a large part of brand management; to create an environment and opportunity to persuade a consumer to purchase one product over another. How do companies go about persuading consumers? How do they differentiate their product from a competitor's nearly identical product, in the mind of the consumer? How do they create a particular attitude or belief around their product? Why would individuals allow themselves to be persuaded?

Branding Your Company - Logos and Tag Lines Aren't Enough

Branding Your Company - Logos and Tag Lines Aren't Enough
By Scott Hepburn

Rebranding may be the most complicated and most risk-prone challenges of a business owner. You take a company or a product that people have come to know, trust and love....and you change it. Risk? Yeah. You screw this up and everything you've built disappears and you have to start from scratch.

The Situation Placement Game

The Situation Placement Game
By Martin Lindstrom, author of BRAND sense

Situation placement creates a brand image in the consumer's mind around an initial product, and then builds follow-up products around the constructed notion. The technique makes brands the raison d'être of those follow-up products. Your product becomes the hero, enhancing a story rather than simply appearing as an added element without any effect on the plot, as is the function of product placement. But how do you engineer this for your own brand? How do you secure space for your brand in a computer game? How do you manage to have your brand featured in a popular song or placed centre stage in a hit movie?

A direct touch – which make sense!

A Direct Touch – Which Make Sense!
by Martin Lindstrom

Just the other day a real letter arrived in the mail. It's been a long time since I received one of those. You know, the kind with handwriting, stamps, and a closed envelope. It felt kind of strange and mysterious, with just a smidgen of excitement, and conjured up a mixture of feelings associated with the passing of time. We've slipped into the digital age, with barely a thought. Sometimes to our detriment, because real letters still work. I'd go so far as to say, real letters have never been in better shape.

Absolut Branded Language

Absolut Branded Language
By Martin Lindstrom

Disney, Kellogg's, and Gillette are three completely different brands with one commonality. Over the past decade, they've established a branded language, whether they know it or not. In my latest book BRAND sense, we found 74 percent of today's consumers associate the word "crunch" with Kellogg's. Another 59 percent consider the word "masculine" and Gillette as one and the same. Americans formed the strongest association of masculinity to Gillette, by an astounding 84 percent.

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Smash Your Brand

Smash Your Brand
By Martin Lindstrom, Brand Futurist

Let's face it - traditional advertising no longer works. An article in the Times, published in June 2004, reveals that the overall effective influence of television commercials has decreased by some 52% over just ten years. In stark contrast, the cost of producing television commercials has increased by more than 130% over the same period. This is a clear indication that the traditional paths of brand building are slowly drying up, forcing marketers to think of alternatives.

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Sensory branding - Using The Five Senses To Build Extraordinary Brands

Sensory branding - using the five senses to build extraordinary brands
By Martin Lindstrom, author of BRAND sense

Advertising ain't what it used to be. Let's face it. Despite the fact that we're using more and more marketing resources, the returns on our advertising dollar are ever diminishing. According to the Newspaper Advertising Bureau, in 1965, 34 percent of consumers in the U.S. could name the brand of a commercial aired during a show. Thirty years later only 8 percent are capable of doing this. By 2007 it's predicted that 20 percent of consumers will be eliminating ads from their television screens with devices like TiVo. It's time to rethink the entire process. Snappier graphics, faster editing, more convincing testimonials or bigger and better discounts will no longer do it. Something new is required.

Touching Brands

Touching Brands Your brand is only as strong as your toilet paper
by Guy Smith, Silicon Strategies Marketing www.SiliconStrat.com

There is a legendary story about Starbucks, their brand, and toilet paper. From within the bowls of Starbucks, their branding guru had summarized the Starbucks brand into an extremely concise brand statement: A great coffee experience. This brand statement encompassed the Starbucks store design, bean selection, barista personalities . . . even their toilet paper.

Seems some smart MBA type hired into Starbucks wanted to downgrade from two-ply to oneply toilet paper in their store restrooms. He calculated a significant cost savings based on deep analysis of the comparative cost of toilet paper, the number of Starbuck stores, how many rolls per year were needed, ad nausium. But Starbucks kept the thicker two-ply paper to preserve their great coffee experience. Stated perhaps too bluntly, Starbucks was worried about all branding touch points.

A touchy subject

Your brand as perceived by the only legitimate judges, your customers is the sum of all their interactions with your company. Every place where a customer can interact with your company is a touch point, and that touch point affects how you are perceived. A lousy experience with one touch point can negate all the brand equity you build in other touch points. When Microsoft releases a security patch that creates more openings for hackers, their brand is diminished.

This is why toilet paper matters.

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Brand strategy is key to business success

Brand strategy is key to business success
by Betty Moore, Founder, Ignition Point

There is rarely a more critical time to get your marketing strategy right than during your company’s startup phase. During this time, money will likely be tight, and the pressure will be intense to generate sales while building credibility and confidence among your target audiences. While the usual marketing plan elements still need to be fleshed out, the birth of your brand deserves special attention to help ensure early success.

This is probably the most overlooked and misunderstood part of the launch of your company. Your brand needs to be engineered to appeal to your primary target audience. Decisions related to positioning, value proposition, and unique selling proposition are integral to the branding effort.

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