Cause Branding Digest, May 26, 2015

Earned Media Can Yield Big Rewards for Philanthropy
(Huffington Post, 12.05.15)

Corporate social responsibility (CSR), corporate citizenship, philanthropy, engagement, shared value—regardless of the name you use, this aspect of doing business is here to stay. And like all core business attributes, communicating about it effectively is critical.

Marketing for Good
(Marketing, 27.04.15)

The rise of ultra-transparency has placed CSR in the midst of a revolution, with huge implications for marketing.

The Brands on a Mission to Do Well by Doing Good
(Marketing Week, 08.04.15)

Trying to change the behaviour of consumers is no easy task but brands are taking it upon themselves to educate the public about sustainability, with Birds Eye aiming to stop unnecessary food waste and Jigsaw aiming to stop clothing going to landfill.

The Key to Marketing Sustainability: Make It Sexy
(Triple Pundit, 29.01.15)

Sexy sustainability. You always put those two words together, right? Stop laughing. Sustainability is a lot of things, but for most of us, sexy isn’t one of them. That needs to change.

“When people are financially invested, they want a return. When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute.” —Simon Sinek

Personal Branding Digest, May 22, 2015

Why Investing in Your Personal Brand Is an Investment in Your Business
(Smart Company, 13.05.15)

Personal branding as a result of social media is now, whether you like it or not, a definition of you. This personal branding can now often sway a potential client’s decision to do business with you.

Is Your Personal Brand Disruptive?
(Entrepreneur, 05.05.15)

How can you embrace being a disruptive leader—in a good way—with your own brand? Here are some of the best practices.

Making a Name for Your Personal Brand
(Business2Community, 03.04.15)

In a time where virtually every word imaginable has been used in the creation of a brand name, many entrepreneurs and business owners are finding it difficult to get ahead. The fact is that startups now have to compete on a global scale, increasing the odds of there being some heavy competition against your personal brand.

5 Personal Branding Myths You Must Debunk
(Forbes, 25.01.15)

I have been working in the field of personal branding for about as long as it has been “a field.” Many of the myths about personal branding that were present at the start still persist today. It’s time to debunk these myths once and for all with a dose of reality.

“You have to be very brave and very entrepreneurial—you have to dare to create your own brand.” —Delphine Arnault

Health and Wellness Branding Digest, May 21, 2015

How One of Healthcare’s Hottest Startups Avoided Being a Middling Wellness Company
(MedCity News, 20.05.15)

More healthcare startups need to talk about their pivots: the moments when the idea they first started with crumbles and—through sheer force of the marketplace—is changed to what business should have been all along.

7 Companies with Amazingly Unique Corporate Wellness Programs
(Mashable, 15.05.15)

Corporate wellness doesn’t have to solely consist of health scans, gym memberships and reimbursements. There are more creative ways of cultivating a healthy office environment.

Patients and Physicians on Using Technology and Sharing Information
(MediaPost, 27.03.15)

Technology is advancing how medicine is practiced, giving patients the chance to participate more fully in their healthcare. These new developments have the potential to elevate the provider-patient relationship, and are being welcomed, for the most part, by both groups.

Viewpoint: Putting Analytics into Commercial Strategy
(Medical Marketing & Media, 27.02.15)

Data. The life sciences industry has a lot of it. The widespread adoption of cloud computing has led to exponential growth in data mining, yet for the most part life sciences lags behind other industries in putting this data to good use in its commercialization strategies.

“The heart and soul of the company is creativity and innovation.” —Bob Iger

Cause Branding Digest, May 19, 2015

Leaders: Place Company Values on the Same Level as Profits
(Triple Pundit, 27.03.15)

Carrying the weight of your business, profits, employees’ well-being and your own conscience can be back-breaking. To ease the burden, activities that aren’t directly tethered to the bottom line tend to fall by the wayside.

Can Treating Low-Wage Workers Well Become the Hot New Business Strategy?
(Fast Company, 16.03.15)

Aetna, Gap, Starbucks—and even Walmart—are making moves to pay and treat their employees better. Are we seeing the start of an age of friendlier big business, or is it all just PR?

A Vaccine for Global Warming
(MediaPost, 11.02.15)

You may not immediately see the similarities between the recent measles outbreak in the U.S., and the ever-contentious hydra-headed problem of global warming. But on closer scrutiny, both come from what may seem like an insane refusal to accept facts and act in the best interests of everyone concerned. Of course, to those who militate against vaccinating their children and attack the idea of global warming as a human-induced phenomenon, their actions don’t seem insane at all.

Cliff Majersik: You Can’t Manage What You Don’t Measure
(GreenBiz, 02.02.15)

One key element to getting business to get serious about climate change is to make financial markets take environmental impacts into account. Cliff Majersik, executive director of the Institute of Market Transformation, is trying to get investors to care about another kind of green.

“When in doubt as to what you should do, err on the side of giving.” —Tony Cleaver

Corporate Branding Digest, May 18, 2015

Is Targeting Millennials a Lazy Marketing Strategy?
(Marketing Week, 10.05.15)

McDonald’s announced last week that as part of its turnaround strategy it will stop “sweeping talk to millennials.” Nonetheless, reaching the 18 to 34 age group through aspirational marketing is a strategy many brands are still racing to employ.

The Greatness Guide to Building Your Brand and Empire
(Entrepreneur, 16.04.15)

There are hundreds if not thousands of branding experts who will tell you how to build your brand, mapping out step by step the technical minutiae of effective marketing strategies.

How to Use the Right Photo to Boost Your Brand
(Small Business Trends, 02.03.15)

Pictures have the ability to tell our stories better than written word. A resume may list your volunteer work with a nonprofit that creates urban gardens for low-income communities, but a picture of you, elbow-deep in earth, showing others how to plant vegetables is more likely to connect with future employers who value community-minded team members.

The Evolving Influence of Today’s CMO
(Forbes, 26.02.15)

Digital marketing. Mobile marketing. Brand-building. While there are many articles on specific marketing-related topics, there is not much written about what it is like to be a CMO. What are the worries, the unique challenges and even the lessons that fuel a CMO’s success?

“Word of mouth is the best medium of all.” —William Bernbach

Personal Branding Digest, May 15, 2015

The ‘Golden Rule’ of Personal Branding, According to LSU’s Dr. Tommy Karam
(, 01.05.15)

As the personal media trainer to the LSU Tigers, Karam says not only is being managing your personal brand about your ability to master your craft, but it’s about likeability, vocal delivery and visual delivery.

Five Personal Branding Strategies Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know
(SmartCompany, 23.04.15)

When it comes to running a business, your reputation is the most valuable asset you own. It is what people say about you when you’re not around. It is what gives you a competitive advantage, and can help drive business and sales.

The Business of Personal Branding
(The Huffington Post, 17.04.15)

When people come to understand that their Personal Brand can determine their success, they tend to pay more attention. Simply, our Personal Brand is as important as we want it to be. Moreover, it’s to do with how much importance we attribute to it. How much are you willing and prepared to do to improve your Personal Brand? Are you prepared to really look at yourself from the inside out? That way, you can ascertain if you communicate your true values and beliefs. For instance, do you tend to say Yes, when you often feel No? Or, do you think you could be more authentic? Are you being the Best version of you? In fact, do you know what the best version of you is?

Give Your Personal Brand More Visibility with a Strong Call to Action
(Business2Community, 27.03.15)

A loyal following is like gold when it comes to building a personal brand. While online marketing is very effective in this process it’s also important to include a strong call-to-action with that, otherwise known as influence or permission marketing. In order to effectively harness the power of this method, it is important to craft your message the right way.

“No one is going to understand your brand better than you.” —Alexander Wang

Health and Wellness Branding Digest, May 14, 2015

Corporate Wellness: How Health Improves the Bottom Line
(Forbes, 13.05.15)

It seems every time we turn around there is a buzz about “corporate wellness.” I have heard it so many times that I wonder if people are becoming skeptical and leery of it being a marketing ploy. However, I know the importance of health in business as I practice a healthy lifestyle and know the positive impact on my bottom line.

Pharma Moves Into Digital Health
(MediaPost, 05.05.15)

The announcement that Novartis and Qualcomm Ventures have formed a joint venture to invest $100 million in digital health is significant and suggests that big pharma is transitioning from talk to action in the strategy to “move beyond the pill.”

Editor’s Desk: Trials and Innovations
(Medical Marketing & Media, 27.02.15)

These days it’s not uncommon for a pharmaceutical company to launch an innovation unit. AstraZeneca and Pfizer have them, for instance, and the groups are tasked with applying digital technologies and services to problems facing the industry.

FDA Clarifies the Line Between Wellness and Regulated Medical Devices
(MobiHealthNews, 16.01.15)

As promised in its FDASIA report, the FDA has published a draft guidance document that aims to help those creating wellness devices and apps to better understand when their product (or their marketing claims) crosses over into regulated medical device territory. As always the agency is seeking comment from the industry and the public on their new draft guidance for the next 90 days.

“Business has only two functions: marketing and innovation.” —Milan Kundera

Lifestyle Branding Digest, May 13, 2015

Don’t Start a Loyalty Scheme, Be a Loyalty Brand
(Marketing Week, 07.05.15)

Points-based methods of driving transactions are becoming less effective at creating real loyalty, instead encouraging deal-seeking behaviour, so brands need to start using data to ensure customers feel valued.

6 Core Principles of Star Brands
(Entrepreneur, 14.04.15)

Brands don’t become stars overnight. Star Brands are the result of many smart and assertive choices backed up by a strong and successful business model. The people responsible for building Star Brands have mastered the balance of brand love and business fundamentals. Star Brands are not only loved, they’re profitable.

Are Bricks-and-Mortar Stores the Next Step for Online Retail?
(, 01.04.15)

Retailers are rethinking their online strategy, realising that physical shops are again one of their biggest assets.

Where Culture Matters in the Brand Plan
(Forbes, 02.03.15)

I’ve argued before that understanding contemporary culture is a competitive advantage. However, it’s important to admit that, in and of itself, culture doesn’t directly solve business problems. So what does that mean for a brand manager?

“Just because you’re a luxury brand doesn’t mean you have to have an attitude.” —Angela Ahrendts

Cause Branding Digest, May 12, 2015

Panera Creates a ‘No No List’ of Ingredients (and Coverage Ensues)
(MediaPost, 05.05.15)

Panera Bread yesterday announced that it is implementing a “No No List” of ingredients for its offerings that is based more on what consumers say they want—and don’t want—than on hard scientific proof that they are bad for you.

Unilever Claims Sustainability Drives Sales as It Readies New Brand Purpose Campaigns
(Marketing Week, 05.05.15)

The “sustainable living brands”, which contribute to the goals the company set out in 2010 as part of its 10 year Sustainable Living Plan, are seeing above average growth according to the company, with high single and double digit sales over the past three years.

Why a Corporate Culture of ‘Kindness’ Is Great for Your Brand
(Forbes, 27.04.15)

Last week I wrote about how you can make employees proud to represent your brand, and part of that has to do with your culture. Some companies create an authentic culture that works uniquely for them. When other companies try to replicate it they fail. Some successful companies have a je noi se qua culture. In French this means “I don’t know what.” Even if those high performing companies can’t define what makes their culture successful, usually they’ve taken steps at the beginning to purposefully integrate values and practices early on.

How Businesses Need to Recruit CSR-Competent Leaders
(GreenBiz, 12.01.15)

What if, at the onset of this century, the boards of America’s big banks had recruited CEOs for their CSR strengths?

“Brands must have a point of view on that purposeful engagement, whether it’s directed toward the environment, poverty, water as a resource or causes such as breast cancer or education. Merely declaring your commitment to a category or cause will not be enough to distinguish your brand sufficiently to see a return on these well-intended efforts.” —Simon Mainwaring

Corporate Branding Digest, May 11, 2015

You Don’t Create Your Company’s Brand—You Discover It
(Entrepreneur, 15.04.15)

Over $500 billion is spent on advertising each year. The average American is exposed to an estimated 3,000 ads per day. Fifteen minutes out of every hour of television programming is devoted to commercials.

Weighing the Cost of Fame
(MediaPost, 01.04.15)

Why would brands eschew the use of celebrities, when, by definition, their recognition factor is high? Because, in addition to recognition, celebrities carry liabilities. In some cases, the celebrity is hot, but the connection to the brand is tenuous, and not organic enough to engage brand-loyalists. In other cases, the celebrity’s credibility is diluted by being associated with multiple brands. And of course, there is always the possibility of a high-profile flameout (DUI, domestic violence, drugs), blackening your brand and leaving your last six months’ work in ashes. Finally, there’s cost. Celebrities are famous, but they’re not cheap.

Our Marketing Models Are Broken. We Need to Make a Shift.
(Forbes, 02.03.15)

Marketing used to be pretty simple. You developed a compelling message, used mass media to broadcast that message to large audiences and grew market share. Mostly, you aimed for the meaty part of the curve, where the law of averages conspired in your favor.

How to Get Your Management Team to Buy Into Marketing Strategy
(Small Business Trends, 10.02.15)

Facing a challenge like implementing a new marketing strategy can be so tiring. Not only do you have to develop the strategy—which will definitely take up a fair amount of time and resources—you also have to get your management team to support the plan.

“One of the biggest challenges you will face will be building your brand. The ultimate goal is to set your company and your brand apart from the crowd. If you form a strategy without doing the research, your brand will barely float—and at the speed industries move at today, brands sink fast.” —Ryan Holmes

Personal Branding Digest, May 8, 2015

Your Name Will Never Change, but Your Business Will: Why Personal Branding Needs to Start Now
(Forbes, 05.05.15)

As I continue to play catchup, building my personal brand and helping others build theirs, I am excited by the opportunities our new world offers. It has never been easier to get your name and story out there and, most importantly, to connect with others. But do it early on, because while your business name may change, most likely your birth name will always stay the same. Just imagine how far ahead of the game you will be in the future, if you start building your personal brand today.

Knockout Personal Branding Strategies from Mayweather and Pacquiao
(Entrepreneur, 01.05.15)

Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao, scheduled to square off May 2 in the biggest boxing match of the past two decades, both have created incredibly successful personal brands.

5 Ways to Define Your Personal Brand
(Cosmopolitan, 25.04.15)

What is a brand? It’s an identity. Branding is the art of aligning what you want people to think about you with what people actually think about you. You can decide what you want the public perception of you to be, and you can shape it. So the question is: How would your friends or colleagues describe you? Is that the message you want to convey? If it’s not, you need to change it. You need to self-examine and decide what you want to stand for. Every person has something unique to offer. To know what that is, look at yourself from an outsider’s point of view.

5 Ways to Exude Professionalism with Your Personal Brand
(Business2Community, 26.03.15)

In our digitally connected world, can you truly separate who you are personally and who you are professionally?

“It’s very important for a brand to have an identity through the years, but it’s very important as well to evolve because times change so fast.” —Donatella Versace

Health and Wellness Branding Digest, May 7, 2015

General Societal Shifts Toward Wellness
(Everything PR, 05.05.15)

There are several areas of societal wellness that we should all be working toward improving. Let’s briefly discuss three of those areas by offering suggestions on how to improve your practice and personal life in simple ways that will help achieve wellness goals.

Coca-Cola Tries Again to Position Itself as Health Food
(MediaPost, 01.05.15)

How many million marketing dollars will Coca Cola have to spend to make us believe it’s in the business of promoting good health, instead of pushing a constant craving for its sugar- and chemical-laden drinks?

How Yoga Changed to Appeal to the Changing US Market
(Science 2.0, 30.04.15)

To many practitioners of yoga in the United States, its original form would be unrecognizable in everything but the name. What was once about spirituality is now about health and physical fitness.

Mobile Marketing Report: On Hold
(Medical Marketing & Media, 28.01.15)

If pharma execs ever doubt that the mobile-health revolution is well under way—if they hesitate for a moment to devote significant resources to the space, ignore patient and caregiver pleas for mobile-first communications or embrace mobile only to the extent that they responsively design their websites—they’d be well served to remember the story of one Jason Adams.

“Brands must empower their community to be change agents in their own right. To that end, they need to take on a mentoring role. This means the brand provides the tools, techniques and strategies for their customers to become more effective marketers in achieving their own goals.” —Simon Mainwaring

Lifestyle Branding Digest, May 6, 2015

Retailer Rewards Programs Falling Short and Disappointment Is Being Shared via Social Media
(Mobile Marketing Watch, 27.04.15)

Many major retailers offer reward programs for their loyal customers. While this sounds as though it would be a good thing, a recent study begs to differ.

Dean & DeLuca, Millennials and Why Smaller Brands Will Succeed in a Global Market
(Forbes, 15.04.15)

It’s well known that big brands have been going global for decades, including big food brands such as McDonald’s, Burger King, KFC, and Starbucks. When a country reaches a certain level of economic development, when it has the class structure big enough to support it, you’ll most likely see the iconic logos of these establishments dotting the cityscapes. (Or, as author and columnist Thomas Friedman said, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, a few years back, “No two countries that both have a McDonald’s have ever fought a war with each other.”)

Protect Your Brand, Oprah Style: 5 Legal Strategies She Uses (And You Should, Too)
(Entrepreneur, 13.04.15)

Creating a strong brand in the eyes of your audience can be the difference between building your business to unimaginable heights, or sinking your ship before you even get started.

5 Things Smart Leaders Do to Empower Employees
(Inc., 04.08.14)

You know you want a self-motivated team. Here’s how to get there.

“As a brand marketer, I’m a big believer in ‘branding the customer experience,’ not just selling the service.” —John Sculley

Cause Branding Digest, May 5, 2015

The Key to Creating Socially Conscious Businesses
(Fast Company, 17.04.15)

On a broad scale, how do we create altruistic organizations that can really transform society and transform economic systems? This is the field I’ve been studying since I left the corporate world eight years ago, and I’m convinced that the key to this is compassionate, authentic leadership. We need a new generation of leaders to step forward and provide this new kind of leadership.

How to Pitch Environmental Performance to Your Market
(GreenBiz, 01.04.15)

Thanks to industry drivers and growing demand, environmental performance has taken its rightful place alongside functional performance, cost, aesthetics, safety and other criteria in product creation and purchasing. Now it is time to include it in marketing.

How Social Impact Strategies Just Might Save the World
(Entrepreneur, 10.03.15)

Taking a page out of the nonprofit playbook, corporate entities like Bain & Company, Unilever, Starbucks and others have all recently implemented social impact strategies. A new kind of intellectual framework, social impact strategies allow companies to view their brand from a different perspective in order to constantly reassess their external and internal engagement operations.

Sustainability and the CMO
(MediaPost, 17.09.14)

As Gardiner Morse wrote in a recent Harvard Business Review article, “a marketing revolution is under way and nowhere is that more visible than in the CMO’s transforming role.” Morse was specifically referring to Unilever’s CMO, Keith Weed, who notably now oversees both marketing and communications and sustainable business. It is a shift from the model that exists at the majority of companies, namely that sustainability exists in a separate division.

“The environment is where we all meet, where we all have a mutual interest; it is the one thing all of us share.” —Lady Bird Johnson