You are viewing Aaker on Brands blog posts tagged as “brand” (16 total). You can also view all blog posts.
The average tenure of a new CMO, according to one study, is less than 24 months. And in a recent study, 60% of respondents thought that this failure was not due to the CMO’s failures but to the fact that the company was not as open to change as they thought. CMOs are hired to drive a change agenda, but just can’t get enough support.
My take is a bit more nuanced. Most organizations do inhibit change and thwart CMO objectives. But how, and why? I believe the power of the product and sometimes the country or functional silo units are the primary impediments. Nearly every organization is decentralized with silo units that have budget and strategy power. One rationale is that such power provides accountability and close-to-the-market decision making. To…
March 6, 2013 • Permalink
When identifying the top print advertisements and best headlines in the last century of advertising, one written in 1926 by a young copywriter named John Caples, only one year on the job, is always part of the conversation. The ad is known by its headline, “They laughed when I sat down at the piano — but when I started to play!” His assignment was to entice people to buy piano lessons by correspondence from the U.S. School of Music. As inspiration he was given a pile of advertisements that worked, another pile that didn’t,…
November 21, 2012 • Permalink
Crayola is a legacy brand that has universal awareness that one associates with making colorful drawings as a child. The 64-count box of crayons represents for many the emotional symbol of what was great about childhood. The century old firm had challenges brought on in part by the advent of electronic competitors for a time, from television to gaming and in part by simple demographics. Crayola was in need of a refresh of their vision, offerings, and culture.
In the inaugural issue of the Journal of Brand Strategy, Crayola CMO Victoria Lozano speaks about how this was accomplished. The process started with the assembly of a team of influential people with conceptual skills that represented different functions and levels within the company, plus an additional few people from outside the firm. With outside consultants facilitating, they spent 20% of their time for four months developing a brand identity for Crayola and determining what the brand should stand for both internally and…
October 17, 2012 • Permalink
Creating effective brand portfolio strategies is one of the most difficult and critical challenges facing today’s executives. Too often, the family of brands generates customer confusion, inefficiencies, mixed opportunities, and misallocation of resource rather than supporting each other and the brand’s underlying strategy. Gathered from my book, Brand Portfolio Strategy, here are 10 guidelines that point toward the creation of a cohesive, effective, well-defined brand portfolio strategy.
1. Make sure that each brand has a well-defined role or set of roles to play in each product-market context that it is expected to contribute. Each brand needs to be actively managed in order to be successful within that role. In particular, brand building resources should be allocated on the basis of these roles and not based on the sales and profits they are currently generating. For example,…
September 12, 2012 • Permalink
A key ingredient to success is to have a clear, realizable, impactful business strategy. But what is a business strategy? I developed my view for part of my book, Strategic Market Management (updated edition coming soon), and I deduced that four dimensions define it. The first concerns where you should compete, and the remaining three concern how you should compete.
The first dimension concerns the product-market investment strategy, the scope of the business and the dynamics and resource priorities within that scope. Which products should be offered, and which segments should be targeted? Which should get aggressive investment to enter or grow, which should get minimal investment, and which should be milked, exited or avoided? Where should growth come from? Options include bringing existing products to new markets (market expansion), bringing new products…
September 5, 2012 • Permalink
Another election, another framing battle. And once again, the Republican party seems to have the edge. Tax relief, death taxes, pro-life, small government, tax and spend. Why don’t Democrats come up with these kinds of memorable, emotive frames?
Take this election cycle’s biggest controversy: health care reform. Republicans sidelined their rivals by framing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act around “mandates” and “taxes,” and by calling it “Obamacare.” Who could possibly support “mandates” or “taxes?” And “Obamacare” certainly doesn’t provide associations with any positive elements of the act. This leaves Democrats once again playing defense. How could they let it happen again? They’re just not the best marketers.
Being able to frame the discussion by imposing a perspective that’s driven by a label is key to winning — whether it’s a divisive political argument or a tough brand battle. The linguist, George Lakoff (…
August 15, 2012 • Permalink
The CEO of Chick-fil-A reportedly said on a syndicated radio show, “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage.’” The quote and other statements about gay marriage resulted in a firestorm of criticism including statements from several major city mayors saying that his firm and its opinions were not welcome. However, the belief that this controversy will hurt the company and its brand is, in my view, misguided.
The generally accepted hypothesis is that a brand should avoid controversy, because it will alienate a portion of its customer base. So the best course is to remain agnostic with respect to any controversial issues, at least visibly. Following this logic, the Chick-fil-A position was therefore at the intersection of a smaller brand mistake and a larger brand blunder with lasting implications.
This hypothesis is probably true for brands such as Coca-Cola…
August 8, 2012 • Permalink
When I am asked for guidance on a brand or marketing problem, I usually respond that I know a method that is “guaranteed” to work: Find an organization that has successfully addressed a similar problem, and adapt what they did. Don’t limit the search to those organizations that look like your own, but be willing to look more broadly.
The NFL has a serious attendance problem due to the incredible experience provided by home television coverage, the high cost of tickets, the hassle of going to the event and the event experience. There is not only a risk to an important income source, but also to the experience. Playing to half-empty stadiums with passive crowds would affect the on-site and the viewing experience.
My view is that the NFL needs to look to role models. Consider the NASCAR experience,…
July 11, 2012 • Permalink
Based on widespread Internet adoption, software enabling social interaction, ubiquitous camera access and mobile connections, Web 2.0 has changed qualitative research. Research is no longer limited by time and location. It can now access experiences as they happen, where they happen. Respondents can be global and engaged with each other. Spontaneous interactions and moments of self-discovery can be stimulated. And it is more cost-effective and much faster than focus groups, ethnographies or in-depth interviews.
No, Dorothy, you’re not in Kansas anymore. Marketers need to understand the new world as occupied by firms like Revelation (Visit their website here, where most of this information originally came from).
- Assume that you are interested in wine experiences. Respondents can keep a journal and show through video or image the context of their wine experience and their observations
June 27, 2012 • Permalink
A home run brand building program? Purina Cat Chow is inviting customers to recount a cat relationship story. Each of the top five out of 50 winners will receive $5,000, a year’s worth of pet food, and exposure of their story on Purina’s social media sites. The stories need to fit one of seven themes:
- My first cat
- Why I’m a cat person
- Forever a cat family
- How we found each other
- Generations of care
- Always there for me
I like the idea. In my view, this promotion has the potential to break out of the clutter, harness storytelling (the current hot brand-building vehicle), be the basis for intensifying a brand relationship, and create a viral video.
Cat owners, in general, have an emotional attachment to their pet, and pet food is far from a functional item. The relationship and what surrounds it can best be captured in a personal story that has…
June 20, 2012 • Permalink