Reflecting on 2023, I am thrilled to share that my website garnered almost 40,000 visitors - growing by another 10,000 from 2022. Having this amount of visitors flowing through my site is a testament to the growing community of brand builders and enthusiasts seeking valuable insights in this space. It's truly humbling to contribute ideas that resonate and provide assistance to fellow professionals in the dynamic world of brand strategy and consultancy.
As we embark on a new year, I find it valuable to revisit the content that resonated most with my audience in 2023. Hopefully this will highlight the odd useful thing you've missed. On top of this it informs my approach for the coming year.
Here are the top 10 posts from 2022, based on the engagement and interest they generated:
The blog post discusses the historical origins of branding, originally meaning to "mark with a branding iron" on livestock. It highlights various reasons for branding, including protection, authenticity, accountability, promotion, familiarity, warning, differentiation, assurance, and symbology. The author emphasizes that in modern business, branding is essentially "the management of meaning," requiring businesses to identify the desired meaning for their offering and communicate it authentically to align with their objectives and connect with customers. The key challenge for modern business leaders is to understand the relevance of these branding concepts to their objectives, communicate it genuinely, and integrate it into their organizational culture.
The BrandOps Framework™, emphasizes the need to move beyond traditional brand strategy implementation and instead operationalize it within the core operations, culture, and routines of a business. The framework consists of three key components: WHY (Purpose, Vision, Big Idea), HOW (Mission, SMART Goals), and WHAT (Objectives, Key Results, KPIs). The author advocates for using this flexible framework to align leadership, set goals, and ensure that brand thinking becomes integral to business operations, ultimately contributing to authentic value creation for customers. The framework is presented as a practical tool for ongoing planning, monitoring progress, and aligning the team with the brand strategy.
In my role as a brand strategist, I advocate for leadership teams to deeply understand their audiences by tuning into customer, competitor, and company insights. These insights, derived from thorough data analysis, converge at the sweet spot of brand positioning, where a powerful strategy is crafted to resonate with the audience and fuel growth.
This post highlighted a video of a workshop I’d done with the Butter comminuty. The workshop explored the importance of defining how a brand shows up for its audience, emphasizing the use of archetypes as a tool for strategic thinking. Archetypes, considered patterns of human behavior, offer a way to bring clarity, consistency, and deeper connection in brand communication, storytelling, and overall strategy. In this post I shared my collaboration using archetypes with the virtual collaboration platform Butter and invited readers to watch the session for free to gain insights into leveraging archetypes for brand distinction.
Branders is a global branding magazine that publishes bi-monthly on a range of industry-relevant topics. The publication’s Editorial Committee, of whom I’m a member, meets regularly to discuss the latest news and trends and to decide what the magazine should publish and say. This post highlighted an amazing offer from Branders Magazine - the magazine was moving to a freemium model.
This post was all about The Law of Prägnanz. The Law of Prägnanz is rooted in the principle of simplicity, is a fundamental psychological concept crucial in brand positioning. It suggests that brands aiming for memorability and resonance must keep messages clear, focus on a single idea, use consistent visual cues, and differentiate from competitors. Applying Prägnanz ensures a brand's lasting impression in a cluttered market, emphasizing the power of simplicity in effective brand building.
In a fiercely competitive business landscape, standing out is imperative. As a brand strategist, I emphasize the transformative impact of daring to be different, urging businesses to add value in their uniqueness and this post is all about this. The Assumption Flip workshop, a powerful tool I use, challenges teams to question and reverse underlying assumptions, fostering radical ideas that can revolutionize brand positioning. Embracing the concept of assumption flipping, supported by real-world examples, unleashes innovation, providing a roadmap for crafting brands that captivate, differentiate, and thrive.
Navigating the fast-paced and crowded business landscape requires standing out, and amidst the noise, the Big Brand Idea emerges as a potent tool. This post is about the process of discovering the Big Idea involves deep insights and leadership collaboration. Activation involves alignment, documented plans, consistent communication, and integrating the idea into the customer journey, leading to transformative outcomes. Embracing the Big Brand Idea becomes a compass, guiding business leaders to stand out and succeed in the marketplace.
In this post I highlight the 21st episode of Let's Talk Brand - the Marketer+ Podcast, where myself and Paweł Tkaczyk, delve into the topic of Brand Archetypes, covering what they are, their utility in brand building, and how to leverage them for creating distinctive brands. The insightful conversation provides a valuable exploration of this powerful tool for brand strategists and you can watch it all on video.
In the journey of a business from the Seed to Series C funding rounds, brand strategy serves as an essential compass, guiding leaders through challenges and opportunities at each stage. In this post we make the point that a well-crafted brand strategy, encompassing the brand's meaning, purpose, and vision, helps build defensibles, de-risk investments, and maximize growth opportunities, aligning leadership teams and rallying employees. It provides a unique identity, strengthens positioning, and facilitates consistent messaging, playing a crucial role in various growth stages, from Seed to Series C funding. Brand strategy evolves with the company, ensuring a strong, relevant brand identity throughout its funding stages.
I hope you find these articles helpful, insightful, and thought-provoking. Keep an eye out for more content in 2024 as I continue to share ideas, tools, methods, and news on brand and culture strategy. Here's to another year of exploration and growth in the realm of brand building! Enjoy.