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Naming a New Brand Category is Harder Than it Looks

Naming a New Brand Category is Harder Than it Looks

Failed category labels are laughable. Before there were snowboards, there was snurfers. PDA phones preempted smartphones. Charga-plates rolled out before credit cards took their place. It seems obvious now why each current category name is so much stronger than its predecessor. But missing the mark with category naming is a mistake that’s easy to make. In our last post about how to define a new category, we left off with what is most commonly considered the fun part of strategy: naming. If you’ve gotten this far, you’ve identified that your existing category isn’t serving your brand’s needs....
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Resonant Experiences and Authentic Stories: What Does Brand Journalism Mean in a World of Sponsored Content?

Resonant Experiences and Authentic Stories: What Does Brand Journalism Mean in a World of Sponsored Content?

Brand Journalism As a Writer at Emotive Brand, Chris Ames comes to EB with a creative background in fiction, journalism, illustration, and bookselling. When approaching storytelling for companies, he strives to eschew some of the pitfalls of traditional branding – stale scripts, hired actors, stock photography – and instead employ a journalistic technique to create a more resonant, human experience. In this post, he offers his thoughts on the power and inherent risks of authentic storytelling in the brave new world of sponsored content. What is “brand journalism” exactly and why do you feel...
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Building a Brand Awareness Campaign: How to Get It Right

Building a Brand Awareness Campaign: How to Get It Right

Big-Fish-Eat-Little-Fish World? The brand world follows the food chain – little fish look up to the big fish, everyone wants to be on top, and low visibility is often equated with eventual extinction. Every brand wants to be the next Nike or Apple, right? The thing is that those big brands – those top-of-mind, always relevant brands that even your grandma knows about – are rare. And if you’re a brand that’s still trying to build awareness, simply imitating what they do isn’t always the right strategy. Brand Awareness Issues At Emotive Brand, we’ve worked with a lot of brands who share a...
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Why It’s Frickin’ Hard for Organizations to Brand Themselves

Why It’s Frickin’ Hard for Organizations to Brand Themselves

The need for a branding agency is hard to determine sometimes. Many of Emotive Brand’s clients come to us after failed attempts to develop their own brand strategy. Just last week, a client sent us some themes they’d identified in an internal brand survey, along with a frustrated note: “We’ve gotten this far. We’re stuck. Can you help?” Why is it so hard for organizations to brand themselves from the inside? Aren’t the people who live and breathe a brand every day the most obvious choice to articulate it? That’s a logical conclusion, and clients who have tried often feel frustrated that they...
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The Future of Work Is More About Cooperation Than Collaboration

The Future of Work Is More About Cooperation Than Collaboration

The Future of Work What does the future of work look like? Successful businesses in the future will share a common characteristic: a cooperative approach to employee engagement, morale, and gratification. Stowe Boyd is a super-smart researcher and someone we’ve followed for years. Stowe is also an author who focuses on the future of work. He believes the tectonic forces pushing business into an unclear and accelerating future. Stowe has made the following observation: “In the collaborative business, people affiliate with coworkers around shared business culture and an approved...
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Mistakes to Avoid When Preparing for a Branding Project

Mistakes to Avoid When Preparing for a Branding Project

All Signs Point to a Branding Project There are a lot of common signs that indicate it may be the right time for a branding project. Maybe your business has experienced high grown and you are ready to reposition to prepare for your next round of funding. Or maybe it isn’t growing fast enough and you need to find a way to differentiate your brand to compete more strongly. Perhaps your competitive set has changed and with it, the industry has evolved opening a new category for you to shift into. With markets and categories shifting so quickly, many organizations are left feeling lost as to how...
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How to Propel Your Brand Toward a Meaningful Position

How to Propel Your Brand Toward a Meaningful Position

Classical vs. A Meaningful Position Classical positioning is the process of finding a unique place for your brand in the minds of people. Meaningful positioning, on the other hand, is the art of earning a treasured space within the minds and hearts of people. Before we examine the differences between positioning vs. meaningful positioning, we should say that we abide by these principles: There is an increasingly large – and disruptive – gap between the way brands think and act, and what it takes to engage, influence and matter to people. This gap is holding both brands and people back from...
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Creating Meaningful Brand Connections

Creating Meaningful Brand Connections

Creating Meaning by creating more meaningful brand connections In our latest white paper, “Transforming your brand into an emotive brand”, we introduce a number of key drivers of our thinking, including the notion of “Meaning/meaningful brand connections”. In our white paper we top-line this key driver in this way: Emotive and meaningful brands strive to operate at a higher level than conventional brands. They act, interact, and react in ways that make every moment emotionally meaningful. Your customers and employees are left feeling more secure and connected. They...
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Nostalgic Brands are Capturing Hearts and Minds

Nostalgic Brands are Capturing Hearts and Minds

A Nostalgic Age As technologies continue to innovate and find new modes of connection, businesses need to move faster than the speed of light. But while moving forward is key to business success, many brands are looking backwards…and with success. Nostalgia is, no doubt, in. Bath & Body Works just announced the reintroduction of the old scents of the ’90s. The Sacramento Kings have embraced nostalgia with a new logo. Urban Outfitter’s is full of Polaroids, records, and retro cassette players. TV networks are bringing back ’90s favorites like Boy Meets World and...
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How Client-Side Experience Informs Agency-Side Strategy: Interview with Emotive Brand Creative Director

How Client-Side Experience Informs Agency-Side Strategy: Interview with Emotive Brand Creative Director

Interview with Skott Bennett, Creative Director As Creative Director of Emotive Brand, Skott puts his client-side experience to work. An expert at creating meaningful solutions that meet the unique needs of both our customers and clients, Skott offers thoughts on how his years inside companies much like many of our clients inform his work agency-side today. What drew you to agency work? I always tried to bring an agency approach to my client-side experiences. And where I found this approach really worked was with brand-related projects. Identifying and defining the true purpose behind an...
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Feel the “Good Burn” of a Strategy that Surprises

Feel the “Good Burn” of a Strategy that Surprises

Get out of Your Comfort Zone How do you feel about the brand strategies your agency is producing? Good? Comfortable? If that’s the case, those strategies may not be doing as much for you as they can. Staying in your comfort zone strategically is about as impactful as staying in your comfort zone at the gym. If excellence is your aim, you’ll only get there by feeling the burn. Of course, a bad strategy will make you uncomfortable too. So how do you know when a strategy is pushing your brand uncomfortably toward excellence? Here Are Three Components of a Feel-The-Burn Strategy: 1. Information...
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Authentic Brands Just Feel Right: Inject Purpose and Feeling

Authentic Brands Just Feel Right: Inject Purpose and Feeling

Everyone’s Claiming Authenticity Where are all the authentic brands? In today’s world, where curation is everywhere, vacuous claims are made left and right by brands, and people are inundated with meaningless media content, authenticity is a hard feeling to come by. You can’t visit a website or see an ad where you don’t see brands declaring that they are, in fact, “the most genuine and the most trustworthy.” The problem is, with so many choices and so much available content, people see right through brand claims that don’t ring true. And because declarations of “authenticity” don’t always...
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5 Things Executives Need to Know When Embarking on Brand Strategy

5 Things Executives Need to Know When Embarking on Brand Strategy

Investing in brand strategy is a big decision for executives to make today.  Plunging into an ocean of the emotional, strategic, and intellectual dimensions and depths of your brand is not what executives often want to spend time and budget on. Preconceived notions about ROI, doubts about the actual value of it, and the more obvious budget concerns to evaluate brand strategy are hugely challenging. Many companies don’t even make it to this place – the place where they accept and understand they actually do need to invest in the brand to address their business problems. But for those that do,...
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Disruptive Brands: How to Challenge the Status Quo and Succeed

Disruptive Brands: How to Challenge the Status Quo and Succeed

Disruptive Brands Are In We’ve talked some about disruptive brands, why challenging the status quo and presenting information in a fresh way is an important driver of successful businesses today. Millennials value disruption more than any generation before. Many brands and businesses today are thriving because they aren’t afraid to do something new and make a splash. Companies everywhere are trying to figure out how to be the next Uber, AirBnB, or Amazon of their industry – innovating faster than their competition, hiring the most creative people out there, and doing something that’s never...
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