John Lewis’ Xmas ad: a gift that gives less to the brand

Retailer John Lewis has lost its title as undisputed champion of Xmas advertising, according to System 1 research on this year’s ad (1), starring Elton John. The brand only just made the [...]

How did Microsoft get its mojo back?

Microsoft’s market valuation pulled ahead of Apple for the first time since 2010,  confirming how effectively CEO Satya Nadella has revitalised the once ailing company. The share price has [...]

Why is Direct Line’s brand strategy “best-in-class”?

Direct Line is again a well-deserving winner in the IPA Advertising Effectiveness Awards, building on their 2016 success that I posted on here, when I reported on a campaign that built insurance [...]

Building an effective brand character

‘Brand properties’ help build the distinctive memory structure that gets your brand recalled when people are making buying decisions, as we posted on here. And a ‘brand [...]

Busting the myths of brand loyalty

“Focusing on driving loyalty with existing customers is the best way to grow, right?” asked the CMO of a major retail client this week. “Analysis shows that if we get loyal [...]

Distinctiveness vs. differentiation: who is right?!

Mark Ritson added fuel to the fire of debate about distinctiveness versus differentiation in a recent column (1). “There is a worrying trend to favour distinctiveness over [...]

Big brands fight back

In this final post on ‘big brands under attack’, we propose how big brands are fighting back, covering both brand strategy and operating model. In a previous post here we showed how [...]

Brand Architecture for Business Growth

Brand architecture can be a theoretical and over-intellectual process that takes place in a conceptual vacuum, divorced from business reality. One resulting problem is brand proliferation, where [...]

Why are small insurgent brands growing?

Headlines today are full of stories about big brands losing out to smaller, fast growing ‘insurgent brands’; some articles go as far as predicting the demise of big brands altogether. Big brands [...]

Are big brands really doomed?

The headlines today are full of stories about big brands losing out to smaller, fast growing ‘insurgent brands’, such as Halo Top ice cream, Skinny Pop popcorn and Dollar Shave Club. In [...]