May 26, 2017

The customer’s voice: Knowing vs. understanding

You can know a lot about your customers and still not really understand them. Today it’s relatively easy to collect data on customer behavior and customer sentiment. But these data don’t tell you why they do what they do or why they think what they think. Understanding the why is as important as knowing the what. […]

Brand awareness is earned

The secret to building brand awareness is to start with customer awareness. Companies today are much more likely to invest in advertising to customers rather than understanding what matters to them. On average, they spend $14 on advertising for every dollar spent on gaining customer insights. But in a world of ad blockers and fractured […]

Relationships are for people, not brands

The notion of a brand relationship has always been a flawed metaphor. The idea that repeated encounters between a brand and a customer would eventually take on the characteristics of a relationship between people diminishes the humanity of real relationships. Can anybody truly have a relationship with a tube of toothpaste or a sack of […]

Building your brand on moments of helpfulness

There is a difference between branding and being a brand. Branding focuses on the grand gesture. The big ad campaign with major media impressions. The breakthrough product innovation. The viral marketing event. Those things capture top-of-mind awareness for a short period of time. But in today’s noisy marketplace that awareness is quickly displaced by the […]