Friday, January 28, 2011

Brand Desire

So we have just finished a large study to understand what makes a brand desirable, some really interesting learnings here.

Brands work because they create desire and brands that create more desire make more money. It's as simple as that. But desire isn't about luxury: a new study of 17,000 people globally found that the World Wildlife Fund is a more desired brand than Mercedes, Cartier and Rolex!
Every brand can become more desirable. Find out how at

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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Innovation and Creativity Resource

(Adam) I stumbled upon this innovation podcast and blog, I think it is an interesting approach as we absorb stimulus in different ways and having audio means that you can listen to innovation and creativity tips on your ipod.

I have only listened to one so far but intend to do more, will keep you updated if there is anything of particular interest.

Oh and he also has a group on LinkedIn, which I find interesting as LinkedIn seems to be moving from much more of a passive tool - I have been on it for 5-6 years and not seen much happening - to beginning to become more of a network. Be interesting to see how they open it up in the future as certainly I prefer to keep personal life (facebook) separate from my professional (LinkedIn).

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

LinkedIn Innovation Group

(Adam) It has been a while since I posted here, sorry for that I have been busy moving over to New York and getting settled here so that rather took over.

I thought I would put this up quickly as it could be of interest to you, it is a LinkedIn group for people interested in innovation. Seen as we tend to be quite a disparate group of people it is interesting to look through the list of people who have joined.

I will try and post some other things that i have seen recently over the next couple of weeks.


Thursday, October 11, 2007

Re-frame the problem

(Scott) Was just listening to National Public Radio and heard a great bit on automobiles and emissions. The commentator offered a simple principle - when it comes to pollution, automobiles are not the problem. Oil is the problem.

We so often focus our ire on automobiles (e.g. SUVs are heavy polluters!) This particular commentator pointed out that cars are not the problem... they are merely an enabler. Oil is the source of pollution. Cars (even SUVs) are the solution - if (when) they exclusively use alternative fuels, we curb pollution.

One additional point... the commentator noted that even if we all drove Priuses, we would not have solved the problem, as we'd still be 100% dependent on oil (A Prius isn't going anywhere with an empty gas tank).

It was a reminder for me that we often get swept up in problems and zero in on symptoms rather than the source. What's a big busines challenge you are working on? Can you re-frame the problem to get at the heart of the matter?

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Goodbye Runlondon hello Supersonic - on myspace??

So Nike has abandoned its runlondon gig and replacing it with SuperSonic. An innovative twist? Perhaps.

In the past you'd log onto an easy to use, clean and simple site that was about one thing: running. You'd sign up for the race, and hope you were one of the first 4000 to do so so that you could secure a place.

Seems Nike is doing things a differently with SuperSonic.

For starters, the website is now hosted on Myspace: This immediately excludes those who are not net-savvy enough to participate.

The site is ubercool, funky, hip and slick and seems to have a more competitive feel to it. Instead of registering for a place in the 10K run, you now have to register to take part in the 100m sprints (first come first serve - "no promises"). The top 1000 sprinters get to invite 3 guests. Thus 1000x3 = 4000 runners in total (admittedly, a clever way to get to the 4000 mark).
Can you imagine the field day on EBay flogging these tickets???

Anyway. The final twist is that this is a party. And a hip party at that.
It takes place on a Saturday night and promises "one night of music fuelled speed".

I'm sure it's going to be a cool event - especially for the hip and happening youth out there.
But for a brand that is trying to regain credibility in the running arena, this seems like an odd strategy. Then again, maybe Nike has decided to stick to what it does best? And that is keep cool.


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Trendwatching advice

Want to know how Trendwatching thinks about, collects and applies trends:

It's an interesting way to spend 15 minutes of reading time and has a couple of good little info nuggets along the way.

Make referrals easy

(Scott) The other day a friend was out walking her neighborhood. She came across a freshly-painted house with a big sign in the front yard advertising the services of the paint company. On the sign, the painter had taped a small stack of business cards (in addition to the company phone number printed boldly on the sign).

What a simple, but effective idea! You see, when I'm out for a walk and see a beautifully painted house that reminds me my place could use a paint job... I may not be ready to call the painter that moment. However, grabbing a business card means its easy to make the call from home later. It reduces the possibility that I'll forget the painter's number (from the sign) and name (so I can't look him / her up in the phone book). In doing so, it creates new business.

I really like this as an example of simple marketing. We often get pretty darn fancy about promoting companies and products via flashy websites, dynamic multi-media campaigns, or even just glossy brochures... when sometimes all it takes is a well-positioned business card.

BONUS: Would love to see the painter tape a picture of the house "BEFORE" the paint job onto the yard sign. That'd make it even more clear the value that was delivered.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

The Giving Threshold

(Scott) Out of sheer coincidence today, I had my hands on a bottle of Athena water and a bottle of Ethos water. Both are closely tied to critical causes...

Ethos donates $0.05 from the sale of every bottle to investing in clean water sources in developing nations.

Athena donates 100% of its profits to women's cancer research.

Which leads me to wonder, what is the "giving" threshold amidst the corporatocracy? Should we demand more?

You can find Ethos at Starbucks, and the company aggressively touts the product's socio-economic ties. It uses the cause as the core marketing message. However, I would bet that the $0.05 a bottle is a fraction of the profit generated by a sale. Compare directly to Athena, whose sole purpose is funneling money to cancer research.

Or, bring Target into the equation. I constantly hear promos on National Public Radio where Target boasts about its giving - it is indeed America's "Most Generous Corporation", however donations amount to only 2.1% of profits (2004 numbers). Is this sufficient?

Wrangling this back to our idea theme... could businesses like Ethos and Target find more innovative uses for their profit? Could they donate more and still strike an appropriate balance with shareholder interests? As innovation drivers, should we be encouraging our clientele to explore giving to grow equity and strengthen ties with key customer segments? Where do innovation and charity collide?

Mobile Back-up

(Adam) I came across this which is a free service where you can back up all your mobile phone numbers. Obviously tapping into a large consumer need. I presume it will start off free and then graduate to a charge but still a good idea and if they keep the charge low enough e.g. £1 - £2 then i can see it being a winner.

Also handy for those of you who have a tendency to lose their phones ;)