Monday, April 09, 2007

Numbers don't make up for the branding

Many analysts like myself get a bit carried away from time to time with the power of the numbers! However we often forget to remind organisations about the benefits of a strong brand proposition. Everyone in marketing knows that to be exceptional, you need a strong brand - that doesn't mean a great logo or fantastic web domain but it means you need a compelling proposition which is well executed. What's amazing is how many poor brands stay above water and even prosper for so long so there's clearly more to it!

There are a thousand presentations out there about "keeping it simple" and "think differently" and almost each presentation uses the same examples - Google, Southwest/Ryanair/Jetblue, Dell, Innocent (next time you see a branding presentation, play brand bingo - the updated version of buzzword bingo). However this one - "The Brand Gap" made an impression on me and i heartily recommend it.

As an aside, i am always impressed when people make strong brands from low interest industries and in recent years, HSBC have taken the lead at doing this in the banking field. They have successfully turned globalisation to their advantage in a manner which Barclay's failed to grasp a few years ago. Their latest "the World's local bank" ad is another good example of this campaign although for me, the cream of the ads are those which appear at every major airport on boarding / departure - genius!

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