Six of the Best: Brand Stories (Week 43) ~ Brand Mix

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Six of the Best: Brand Stories (Week 43)

Here's my summary of the best and most interesting branding stories of the week:

1) Clash of the Titans: The Microsoft vs. Apple ad battle

This epic battle continues. Grant McCracken explains here why he thinks that Crispin Porter + Bogusky could be turning the tide by trumping Apple's avant-garde position by embracing real diversity. "It could embrace authenticity instead of a pose." Apple has countered with this ad which, somewhat ironically, tells Microsoft that it should be spending money on fixing its product not on advertising.

2) How to win by using Web 2.0: Financial Times

Who can resist a 2x2 matrix? This one helpfully shows the field of 1.0 and 2.0 battle from low risk options like press releases and on-site videos to the much more risky Wikipedia and Social network sites.

3) Economy driving credit union promo: The Financial Brand

“Come see Paul,” the headline on the billboard reads. “He has $50 million to lend.” These days, unfortunately, that's a differentiated message for a financial services company and shows that they have slipped many rungs down the ladder.

4) What consumers do in a downturn: Grant McCracken
Grant makes the case that the recession is going to switch our mindset from being forward-looking to worrying more about the here and now. Or, as he describes it, going from "surging" to "dwelling." he has a second post about dwelling here. It's interesting that one of the first signs that we've had that some of our clients are preparing for the recession is that they've implemented travel freezes. I wonder if that's related?

5) Wal-Mart customers delay buying necessities: Reuters
Another thing that many consumers do in a downturn is live from paycheck to paycheck. Wal-Mart's sales are always higher around pay periods at the beginning and middle of the month but the sales spike has become more pronounced over the last few months and has now spread to necessities like baby formula.

6) Overcoming Common Brand Problems - 40: Branding Strategy Insider
Brand VanAuken rounds out the series of 40 common brand problems with this one which suggests that few brand managers today have the skill set needed to really understand the customer. Includes a link to the 39 previous posts in the series in case you've got nothing to do today.

See you next week for more stories from the world of brand strategy.

1 comment:

Jeffry Pilcher said...

Re: #3 (the "money-to-lend" billboard. It's worthy pointing out a little irony — that the name of the guy in the billboard is "Paul ECONOMY." He's an employee of the credit union, and yes, that's his real name.

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