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Non-Business Books to Improve Your Brain and Brand

Non-Business Books to Improve Your Brain and Brand

When I worked in a bookstore, I would often help young businesspeople find the books their bosses wanted them to read. This assignment was to help them expand their thinking, get a new perspective, and stand out from the crowd. But invariably, they would always ask for “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” or if they were in sales, “The Art of War.” To be clear, there’s nothing wrong with these titles! But in the words of Haruki Murakami, “If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is...
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User-Generated Content and Why You Want to Be a Usage Brand Today

User-Generated Content and Why You Want to Be a Usage Brand Today

Are Users the New Billboards? Historically, brands relied heavily on marketing and advertising to drive awareness and engagement with products and services. But in an era of general mistrust of big corporations, ever-heightening consumer expectations, and a no-bullshit view on unsubstantiated claims, even a killer ad might not be enough to drive your brand forward. That’s why smart and strategic brands realize its customers have the potential to be the biggest trust, credibility, and value builders (or destroyers) out there. And that nailing brand experience today means tapping into the...
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Is Revenue Hiding in Plain Sight? Six Steps to Refocusing on the Customer

Is Revenue Hiding in Plain Sight? Six Steps to Refocusing on the Customer

Leading a B2B organization is a lot like trying to change the wheels on a bike while you’re still riding it. Half of the time, you’re rethinking internal systems and how to assemble them in new ways. The other half, you’re just trying to keep the business running and avoid any major potholes. There are many different ways to drive an organization, but if you’re not thinking about customer experience at every touchpoint, it might be time for a tune-up. Sales, Engineering, or Marketing? If you’re a sales-led organization, you’re primarily focused on revenue, deals, price, and...
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What’s in a Name? An Interview With a Brand Naming Expert

What’s in a Name? An Interview With a Brand Naming Expert

Anthony Shore names things. For 25 years, he has wielded his linguistics and varied marketing background to introduce more than 200 product and company names to the world. Even if you don’t know him from this New York Times Magazine article, you’ve probably come across his work: Fitbit Ionic, Virgin Voyages, and Jaunt to name just a few. From novel descriptors to taglines and slogans, Shore specializes in succinct, inspired brand expressions of six words or fewer. As one of the world’s foremost naming experts, we’re thrilled to partner with him. Today, we sit down with Shore to discuss...
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Introducing the Art of Symbols: How Ancient Symbols Inform Brand Design

Introducing the Art of Symbols: How Ancient Symbols Inform Brand Design

After successfully completing the #100DayProject, Emotive Brand is thrilled to launch the Art of Symbols, a website exploring how ancient symbols inform contemporary brand design. Check it out! The Art of Symbols As previously discussed, the 100DayProject is a free art project started by Lindsay Thomson that takes place online. Every spring, thousands of people all around the world commit to 100 days of exploring their creativity. “It’s a lot to commit to, 100 variations on a theme,” said Jonathan Haggard, Senior Designer. “Just like creating anything, the first 90 are the expected and...
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This Is Not Another Blog Post: The Power of Differentiation

This Is Not Another Blog Post: The Power of Differentiation

Somewhere in a humid conference room right now, someone is adding the phrase “disrupt the status quo” to a bulleted list titled “our values.” Can you smell the whiteboard marker? Can you hear the crackled audio of the one remote employee dialing in to suggest that we “shatter the status quo,” since the word “disrupt” is so overdone? I’ve been there, you’ve been there, you might be there right now. One thing we all know deep down as we finish our third coffee of the morning: this is not how you differentiate your business, brand, or culture in a meaningful way. You can’t just say, “I’m not...
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Why Curiosity Fuels Business Innovation

Why Curiosity Fuels Business Innovation

Where’s the Curiosity? Children thrive on curiosity. People grow up asking questions. Many young children ask “Why?” almost excessively, wanting explanations for everything—unafraid to ask, always curious, and fiercely inquisitive. Why? They are in a phase of intense learning, absorbing information, and widening their capacity for new information at a rapid pace. But studies have found that curiosity peaks at around age four or five and takes a steady decline from there. As people grow up, they become more self-conscious, more fearful about asking questions, and are increasingly...
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How to Hire the Right Branding Agency

How to Hire the Right Branding Agency

The Business Case for Hiring a Branding Agency In all the years of working with tech companies, we have heard the same story time and time again about the trials and tribulations of VPs and marketing executives trying to secure a budget to invest in hiring a branding agency with limited success. On top of that, how to hire the right agency can be just as confusing. We hear about them making strong and compelling business cases to invest in the brand to leadership teams and hitting a wall. It happens at every budget cycle, management meeting, and discussion around disappointment in growth,...
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Adopt a Growth Mindset to Drive Business

Adopt a Growth Mindset to Drive Business

Growth vs. Fixed MindsetWe believe an organization that adopts a growth mindset can position itself to thrive. But what exactly defines a growth mindset?At Emotive Brand, we define a growth mindset as a set of attitudes and behaviors that reflect the belief that an individual’s talent is not set in stone. Talent can be developed. Intelligence can be fostered. Creativity and innovation can be strengthened. Leaders can emerge. People hold potential.This means every employee within an organization has to have the ability to develop, grow, and learn. And organizations who believe this seek out...
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A Designer’s Guide to a Successful First Presentation

A Designer’s Guide to a Successful First Presentation

Presentation Is Everything The Emotive Brand design team had the pleasure of attending First Round San Francisco, a one-day showcase of original client presentations showing initial design explorations for logo, identity, and branding projects. Twelve different design studios presented on a variety of client projects – everything from a global healthcare non-profit to a menstrual cup company. The crowd was filled with eager designers – some from design studios, others from tech companies, and some freelancers. We’ve gathered a few key takeaways – a checklist of sorts – to make sure all the...
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Turn Your Instagram Into a Playground for Experimentation

Turn Your Instagram Into a Playground for Experimentation

Instagram is incredible. All in one app, you can feel jealous of other people’s lives, hungry for other people’s food, and intimidated by other people’s makeup routines. When it comes to brand strategy agencies and design studios, Instagram tends to be used for either sharing polished client work or photos of employee’s dogs (equally important). But more and more, we’re seeing studios break out from the norm and utilize the platform as a playground for design experimentation. Turning the web into their own personal focus group, agencies are sharing weird sketches, creative side projects, and...
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Kick the Door Down with Your Brand Manifesto

Kick the Door Down with Your Brand Manifesto

Building a successful brand can feel like building a ship in a bottle. There are so many delicate and interlocking pieces to monitor and keep safe within a defined system. It’s a process that rewards research, meticulousness, measuring twice, and cutting once. Yet in nearly every project I’ve been part of, there comes a time when the kid’s gloves come off. People get restless, get sick of being extra careful, and want to kick the door down with their idea. Maybe everything feels technically right, but nothing is resonating in an impactful way. The fact is, when it’s time to go to market,...
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Navigating Between Good and Bad Failure

Navigating Between Good and Bad Failure

Silicon Valley loves the idea of failure. In the world of tech startups, messing up is practically a religion. People wield that Samuel Beckett quote – try again, fail again, fail better – like it’s a Louisville Slugger. As Adrian Daub writes, “People take jobs and lose them, and go on to a new job. People create products that no one likes, and go on to create another product. People back companies that get investigated by the SEC, and go on to back other companies. In Silicon Valley, it seems, there is no such thing as a negative experience.” But the thing is, not all types of failures are...
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Five Ways a Meaningful “Why” Creates a Compelling Workplace Experience

Five Ways a Meaningful “Why” Creates a Compelling Workplace Experience

Our experience shows that many brands have been crafted with only the customer in mind and that the resulting “customer experience” does not in any way parallel the “workplace experience.” As a result, the brand – as it is now articulated – is relatively meaningless internally. We believe every brand has a meaningful “why” hidden within. This hidden “why” is powerful because it can do as much internally as it can externally. Our job is to dig that out and shed new light on it, all with the ambition of delivering these five benefits. 1. Increase...
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If You Want People to Fill Out Surveys, Make Them Beautiful

If You Want People to Fill Out Surveys, Make Them Beautiful

Two true things about decision-making in business: 1) You should collect information from all the key stakeholders regarding their thoughts, feelings, hopes, and expectations. 2) People hate filling out surveys about their thoughts, feelings, hopes, and expectations. In an ideal world, there would always be enough time to conduct qualitative data in-person through one-on-one interviews or focus groups. Everyone would feel heard and everyone would have a voice at the table, which would be perfectly reflected in the end product. Unfortunately, we live in this world; the one where you’re...
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