The CEO Doesn’t Get It!

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A reader recently called to talk about a problem with her CEO. For reasons that are about to become abundantly clear, this reader will remain nameless.

She told me that she and her work group have great energy to develop a branding program for their company. They want to bring the company “out of the dark ages” of a production/sales mentality, into a new day.

But the CEO isn’t having it. He doesn’t think branding applies to his company and doesn’t see it as a priority. How, the reader asked, could she convince him otherwise? Continue reading “The CEO Doesn’t Get It!”

Bigger or Better?

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Does size matter? If you ask me, I’ll tell you that “better” beats “bigger.” The brand is the thing.

In the pages of the Cincinnati Business Courier some weeks back, Lee Robinson of Robinson Realtors had this to say when asked what it was like being “the small guy” in the local real estate market:

“The smart consumers get it. They realize that the largest restaurant in the world, McDonald’s, isn’t the best. A similar analogy can be drawn to our high-quality real estate firm that is small by design.”

Small By Design?

Did he say “small by design”? As marketers, we’re often caught up in the “bigger” game, as if bigger is the ideal state of being. The message heard too often is “grow or die.” We have it drummed into our heads that sales have to increase vs. last month, last quarter, last year. Share has to grow. Profits have to go up, marching ever upward, or heads will roll. Continue reading “Bigger or Better?”

Want What Nike Has? You Gotta Earn It.

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At a recent branding seminar, I asked attendees what they hoped to achieve with their branding efforts. One guy exclaimed, “I want what Nike has – instant name recognition!” Around the room, many heads nodded in agreement.

Over the years, I’ve asked clients, prospects and colleagues that question hundreds of times, and a fair percentage of replies are along those lines. Maybe it’s Starbucks or Target instead of Nike; maybe they want their brand to be a “badge” or have “a logo everyone knows.”

So why do so few brands achieve those results? Because most brands don’t earn them. They want the quick fix. They want to play it safe. Or they want something for nothing. Continue reading “Want What Nike Has? You Gotta Earn It.”