Topics

Brand Behavior


Challenger Brands: Design that Disrupts

Challenger Brands: Design that Disrupts

Challenger Creative This post is the last in our three-part series on challenger brands. You can read a general primer to challenger brands or a deep dive into B2B challengers right here. Previously, we chatted about the power of adopting a challenger mindset, how to compete against your category, and what the B2B world can learn from B2C disruptors. In these examples, most of the strategies were internal. It was a question of knowing how to recognize the pressure for change, creating a shared vision, having the capacity to execute, and building out a realistic work plan. But still, the...
Read more >

Challenger Brands: B2B Challengers

Challenger Brands: B2B Challengers

Continuing the Challenge This post is the second in our three-part series on challenger brands. You can read part one, “Challenger Brands: A Primer,” right here. Previously, we spoke about adopting a challenger mindset. It’s one defined by ambition, agility, and a willingness to take risks. Most importantly, we noted how businesses are no longer competing against each other – they are competing against the category they are in and the expectations of what a customer experience feels like. At a glance, these personality traits naturally lend themselves to the B2C world. Ask anyone to rattle...
Read more >

Challenger Brands: A Primer

Challenger Brands: A Primer

Are you up to the challenge? Starting today, we’re launching a three-part series on challenger brands — who they are, how they behave, and why your brand could benefit from adopting their disruptive mindset. As this is the first blog in the series, let’s start with the basics. The beginning, as they say, is always a good place to start. What is a challenger brand? “A challenger brand is defined, primarily, by a mindset — it has business ambitions bigger than its conventional resources, and is prepared to do something bold, usually against the existing conventions or codes of the category, to...
Read more >

Branding for Internal Alignment

Branding for Internal Alignment

Much has been written about the power of brand and its role in successful businesses. Brands can help a business build relevance and loyalty, but the process of brand building has value in and of itself. One of the most overlooked advantages of the process is how it can create internal alignment along the way. Uncovering Difficult Truths  Whether we are creating a new brand or refreshing an existing one, our first step is to gain a deep understanding of its dynamics among both internal and external audiences. We examine the various perspectives that exist within an organization through...
Read more >

Adopting a Human Mindset

Adopting a Human Mindset

Over the past weeks, we’ve transitioned to a new life at home, the place where everything now happens with little exception; a blurred, ever-shifting diagram dividing work, our relationships, family life, and rest. In this way, coronavirus has become the great equalizer. The pandemic has also clarified the differences between how we live our lives and the support we’re able to receive, or not. It has swiftly and single-handedly altered our needs as people. It has forced us to prioritize what matters most and accept what’s out of reach. As a result, we have competing practical needs;...
Read more >

When Your Values Aren’t Really Values

When Your Values Aren’t Really Values

Beware of Generic Values In the inboxes and Slack channels at Emotive Brand, there is a video that often gets shared before we embark on a brand video. It’s called “This Is a Generic Brand Video, by Dissolve,” and it’s a hilarious satire of when you try to make your brand stand for everything, it ends up standing for nothing. “Equality, innovation, honesty, and advancement,” the narrator says, in a salt-of-the-earth grumble, “are all words we chose from a list.” Company values not only shape the external identity of your organization, they act as an internal compass for your current and...
Read more >

Business Imperative: Socializing Strategy

Business Imperative: Socializing Strategy

One of the first things we learn in business is the importance of “having a plan.” Preferably, it should be a strategic plan, complete with milestones, action items, KPIs, and other important measures. This is definitely true. You need to have a plan, and you need to be socializing strategy. As someone who’s been in the consulting game for many years, I can’t count the number of times I’ve sat down with new clients only to discover that while there may, in fact, be a carefully (and expensively) constructed strategic plan, it’s a mystery to most employees. Chances are, they learned...
Read more >

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...
Read more >

Bridging the False Divide Between B2B and B2C

Bridging the False Divide Between B2B and B2C

Business is made of people trying to sell each other things. That’s it. And yet, there is still this massive gulf between business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C). You feel it immediately in the design and language used. You don’t need a branding vocabulary to know when you’re seeing a B2B ad, because it will probably feature code, a weird bar chart, and copy like, “Adding code coverage with Slather to Zendesk’s iOS SDK build.” Here’s what I want to know: high-level B2B decision-makers are still people – people with hearts, minds, and feelings who make decisions based on...
Read more >

The Surreal World of Brands, Social Media, and Millennial Humor

The Surreal World of Brands, Social Media, and Millennial Humor

Battle of the Brands Even for people who spend most of their time online, there are still those moments that remind you just how surreal our current technological moment is. Earlier this month, while mindlessly browsing, I suddenly realized I was six comments deep into a Twitter argument between the social media managers of Wendy’s and Steak-umm. Participating in #NationalRoastDay – an annual tradition of lightly making fun of people and brands – the playful hashtag game quickly turned aggressive when the two companies started vehemently attacking each other’s brand voice and products. Just...
Read more >