June 2012

What does it take to transform the work of marketing? Understanding the art and the science that powers it is key, along with a healthy dose of inspiration to keep the creative juices flowing.

In this issue of our newsletter, we offer up thinking and resources to help you on all fronts, refreshing your perspective as your transformation continues.

Visit The Inspiratory and Get…Inspired!

Understanding Nation Branding

5 Tenets to Help Survive, Thrive in a Digital World

Building a Marketing Analytics Capability

Turning Dead, Discarded Ideas Into Growth Platforms

Recommended Reading

In the News

Spotlight on Speaking

Visit The Inspiratory and Get...Inspired!

Prophet’s blogging presence has gotten much richer with the launch of The Inspiratory – featuring bite-sized posts on noteworthy trends and hot topics in the world of brand, marketing, innovation, digital, design, and analytics. It’s a place for the interested and interesting to get their daily dose of inspiration.

We see The Inspiratory as a place to learn more about what’s influencing the community of marketing – positively and negatively – while also showcasing the scope of our thinking and our clients. 

The Inspiratory features contributions by Prophet’s people at all levels in the firm and from our offices around the globe. It’s agreat new way to engage with our community, so keep checking back for new features, like real time Q&As with our leaders and fun competitions to inspire innovative thinking.

Visit The Inspiratory here…and don’t forget to bookmark and share it!  

Understanding Nation Branding

Nation branding attracts a lot of interest for a number of reasons – whether it’s focused on building a strategy to help countries still struggling with a poor economy or those that are emerging as new forces and are looking to showcase why.

In a two-part blog post, Prophet Vice Chairman David Aaker takes a look at approaches that make for effective nation branding and how this is different from business branding approaches that may be more familiar to some. Read on here and here.  

5 Tenets to Help Survive, Thrive in a Digital World

Chaos. If there’s a single word to encapsulate today’s digital environment, that one clinches it. The dizzying pace of change has been hard to keep up with (never mind get ahead of) from every perspective: Channels and platforms. Devices and tools. Customer behaviors…and expectations.

Prophet Senior Partner and Digital Practice Leader Chiaki Nishino says the chaotic environment is a challenge for marketers to learn to manage effectively. Yet, it’s not only doable, she says, but also represents a powerful pathway to better customer engagement.

Capitalizing on the promise of digital takes a strategic orientation that has five key tenets as its basis. Read on to learn more.  

Building a Marketing Analytics Capability

Without a doubt, more effective marketing analytics is one of the biggest hot buttons today in business. Senior marketers are looking seriously at enhancing these capabilities to ensure analytics are doing the job and making a difference to the business. 

Building a marketing analytics capability, says Prophet Senior Partner James Walker, demands an “evidence-led approach” to evaluating what different pieces of data in different combinations tell you. It goes way beyond working with just data and analytics. 

Walker and Prophet’s analytics team have teamed with various experts – CMOs, academics, and other analytics professionals – to understand what it takes to build a marketing analytics capability. It’s led to eight rules that should guide the way. Learn more here.

Turning Dead, Discarded Ideas into Growth Platforms

Good business ideas sometimes die an unnatural and premature death. Sometimes they are just ahead of their time, which is why it’s smart to periodically revisit your inventory of dead and discarded ideas. 

As Associate Partner David Warren notes, a shift in the way you look at some of those dead ideas can sometimes yield opportunities to create rich, diversified, and durable growth platforms. 

An innovation audit is a good starting point for breathing new life into dead ideas. It’s part of an evaluation process that applies filters in order to create clusters of related ideas, then breaks them into sets of individual ideas that complement, support, or follow each other.

It’s all part of a framework that takes rigor, hard work, andcreative thinking to put in place. But the reward is richer and more durable growth platforms over time. Learn more about our framework here.

Recommended Reading

Brand Valuation: Paradoxes and Pathways
By James Walker and Joerg Niessing
Brand valuation is important for us at Prophet because it embodies the intersection of our unique individual capabilities: brand, marketing, design, digital, innovation, and analytics. View this presentation to better understand our POV.

2011-2012 Reputation Winners and Losers
Prophet’s Third Annual Corporate Reputation Study
These are tough times for companies trying to build and maintain their reputations. Between the sluggish economy, business toe-stubbing (and worse), and a public with a long memory and an increasingly skeptical nature, recovering from the reputational hits that have hammered U.S. businesses in recent years is going to be a slow process.

In the News

Richmond Times Dispatch features Andy Stefanovich 
The Richmond Times Dispatch featured Prophet's Chief Curator and Provocateur Andy Stefanovich and focused on his role as a local business and community leader.

Sarah Bellamy joins Prophet as a Partner

John Kutz joins Prophet as a Partner

Spotlight on Speaking

Change Agent Webinar Series – Part 4 
July 12 - Webinar
Join GAP's CMO Seth Farbman and MaryKay Kopf, CMO of Electrolux, as they share the role of innovation in transforming the work of marketing in their companies.

Shopper Insights in Action Conference
July 18–20 — Chicago, IL
Prophet's own Jeff Smith will be presenting at this event being held on the Magnificent Mile in Chicago, IL. The theme for the event this year is The NEW, Integrated, Multi-Channel, Socially Interwoven Journey to Purchase. We hope you can join Jeff - register with the discount code SHOP12JS for 20% off the registration price. 

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Consultants’ Corner

Interested and Interesting 

From Prophet’s curator and provocateur team, Interested andInteresting is a monthly exploration of the business of brand, marketing, innovation, digital, design, and analytics. We'll share inspiring stories that engage and illustrate business principles in an abstract, provocative way.

Episode One: BioRide and The Innovation Audit
Breathing new life into old or dead ideas can be a brillant path to innovation. By breathing new life into a wasted product, Joey and Jeff Anderson built BioRide, a successful new business. We'll explore their path to success, and talk to Prophet’s David Warren about our Innovation Audit – a framework for reviving your company’s dead ideas into new growth platforms (read his article on this topic in this newsletter).

David Aaker's Latest Blog

Purina on Creating and Leveraging the Power of Stories
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. I like the idea...

Scott Davis' Latest Blog 

Getting Apps Right: How Domino's Is Beating the Odds
For a few years now, the shiniest new toy in the digital marketplace has been the mobile app. The proliferation has been amazing.


Where the discipline of inspiration meets the practice of business. Read more.

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