Consumer/Lifestyle Branding Digest, May 4, 2016

The Social Cost of Bad Online Marketing
(Harvard Business Review, 20.04.16)

Dan Lyons’s book Disrupted is an often-delightful tour through startup culture, based on the author’s experience working at online marketing firm HubSpot. Despite taking the faux-curmudgeonly attitude of an anthropologist exploring the strange world of business dudes — is a sales funnel really that much of a novelty? — Lyons’s dissection of the startup world is warmly humorous far more often than it’s coldly cynical.

PR Gaining Greater Respect & Influence in Marketing Strategy
(Business2Community, 17.04.16)

Public relations is gaining greater leverage and respect in brand marketing. Many companies and brands are bestowing a larger role on public relations in their overall marketing and brand management strategy, sometimes even a leading role.

5 Subtly Effective Marketing Strategies You Never Considered Before
(Forbes, 14.04.16)

Content is king has become something of a buzzword in the world of Internet marketing. And 98% of marketers say this is their core strategy. To an extent, it’s true, but if you think you are going to post lots of content and reap the rewards you are sadly mistaken. There’s far more to making your business a success than that.

Top Ways to Use Data to Build Relationships
(Marketing Week, 08.02.16)

Consumers have a greater appreciation of their data’s value than ever before and how brands use it will ultimately determine whether they can build meaningful relationships with their target audience.

“#Content was never King. But great #communication and #teaching always have been and always will be.” —Marcus Sheridan

Why Awards Matter to PR


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The ever-shifting landscape has brought seismic changes to PR, and now creativity matters more than ever.

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Cause Branding Digest, April 12, 2016

Are You Defining CSR Success All Wrong?
(Forbes, 06.04.16)

With the pile-up of data proving the bottom line benefits of employee volunteer and giving programs, more companies are clamoring to launch or escalate their own programs. As someone whose business helps organizations manage their corporate volunteering and giving, I’m delighted with this trend towards more employee-led philanthropy.

How CSR Is Driving Purposeful Food Sales to Record Levels
(Triple Pundit, 04.04.16)

The traditional food and beverage industry is in crisis. Pop, fizz, drink … WEIGHT GAIN is now a growing consumer belief. This shift in consumer perception has driven soda sales to a 30-year low. Traditional food and beverage brands have lost the mainstream consumer’s trust. Seventy-five percent of consumers believe food manufacturers are more focused on profits than human health.

Unilever’s Keith Weed: Brands Can and Should Make a Difference to the World
(Marketing, 23.03.16)

Unilever CMO Keith Weed and Project Everyone marketer Amanda Mackenzie urged corporates to make a difference to the world this morning at the Guardian Changing Media Summit.

Fashion Companies Can Do More on the CSR Front
(WWD, 22.03.16)

From reducing carbon emissions and mitigating the environmental impact of textile production to strengthening fair labor practices and addressing workers’ rights, corporate social responsibility has a broad mission.

“All company bosses want a policy on corporate social responsibility. The positive effect is hard to quantify, but the negative consequences of a disaster are enormous.” —Noreena Hertz

Consumer/Lifestyle Branding Digest, December 9, 2015

‘Give Them a Rich Experience’: The Importance of Retaining Customer Loyalty
(FoodDive, 09.12.15)

With consumers segmented by an abundance of choices, food and beverage manufacturers are searching for new ways attract new customers and boost customer loyalty among the customers they already have.

It’s the Real Thing
(The Economist, 14.11.15)

“Authenticity” is being peddled as a cure for drooping brands.

Luxury Brands and the Social Campaign
(The New York Times, 01.12.15)

José de Cabo spends a lot of time on social media. But unlike most people who post on Twitter and Facebook to keep up with friends and family, Mr. de Cabo and his team of more than 140 people—primarily based in New York and London—have another goal.

Marketing Transformation Can Be Uncomfortable
(MediaPost, 11.11.15)

Many of you are dealing with a typical challenge: how to transform your organization from one manner of operation into another. Sometimes you’re dealing with the transformation from traditional to digital; in other cases, the shift is from digital to data-driven. In every case, the transformation is difficult and feels very uncomfortable, but don’t lose faith — change often takes quite a long time.

“Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is probably the reason so few engage in it.” —Henry Ford

Consumer/Lifestyle Branding Digest, October 28, 2015

5 Things You Need to Know About New Heartland Pro-Millennials
(Forbes, 07.10.15)

Millennials are top of mind for most brands, but few have mastered how to convert them into loyal customers. One big faux pas we see brands make frequently is lumping them into one big group. In reality, Millennials are extremely diverse in their life stages, habits, and values. Where they live also has big impact on their brand loyalty.

A Playful, Interactive Approach to Book Marketing in the Digital Age
(Fast Company, 30.09.15)

Old-school book publishers can be reticent to weave new technologies into their long-established practices, but a team of designers at Penguin UK is working to change that. Last year, designers Mathieu Triay and Matthew Young designed an interactive “wheel of book discovery” for the esteemed publishing house’s 80th birthday. Now they’ve designed an equally appealing site for Carlo Rovelli’s bestselling book, Seven Brief Lessons on Physics.

The Marketing Puzzle Is Unsolvable, but Here’s Why That Doesn’t Matter
(Adweek, 21.09.15)

It has taken a long time—maybe the entire history of advertising—but today’s iconic brands are finally discovering how to balance the art of marketing with the science of data to connect with more customers. In most cases, the secret is using technology that can deliver and simplify the science in ways that nurture creative innovation.

What Could Facebook’s Personal Assistant ‘M’ Mean for Marketers?
(Marketing Week, 27.08.15)

From delivering flowers to booking travel, Facebook is taking on Apple’s Siri by introducing its very own personal assistant feature on Facebook Messenger. But how could brands benefit?

“I think people love having a person behind a brand who lives it. The idea of storytelling is really important.” —Aerin Lauder

Corporate Branding Digest, September 14, 2015

Grow from Your Strengths
(Strategy + Business, 18.08.15)

The only sustainable way to capture new opportunities is to remain true to what your company does best.

5 Branding Considerations You Should Think About When Setting Up a Company
(Startups, 05.08.15)

There are many things to consider when setting up a company—and one of the most important elements is your brand. It’s fair to say that there are a lot of different ways a brand can work—and it’s actually an ever evolving thing. However there are a lot of considerations for branding in the initial stages of company formation.

3 Things Jessica Alba’s Honest Company Must Do to Stop Its Brand from Burning
(Entrepreneur, 03.08.15)

The single most valuable and fragile asset of any organization is its reputation; it takes years to build, but only days for it to be irreparably dismantled.

Why Data Must Be the Driver for Business Transformation
(Marketing Week, 29.05.15)

Brands overhauling their businesses to become more customer-centric must put data at the centre of their reforms and instill it in their organisations, to avoid creating a new but irrelevant proposition.

“The best salespeople are not salespeople, they’re people who’ve not only bought the product, but also bought into the idea of the company and the brand.” —Jarod Kintz

Health and Wellness Branding Digest, August 6, 2015

Hospital Marketing Departments Expand with Focus on Data, Social
(Healthcare Finance, 27.07.15)

Using social media, web technologies and data analytics, healthcare marketing professionals can engage in ways like never before.

Is Pharma Truly Equipped for Transparency?
(Clinical Leader, 08.07.15)

News from the past few months has clearly portrayed the ongoing struggle to establish and maintain transparency of how drugs perform in clinical trials. One of the most recent examples is a new lawsuit filed against Gilead by the Treatment Action Group and the Global Health Justice Partnership because of Gilead’s failure to grant access to the clinical trial data for the drugs Sovaldi and Harvoni.

Want to Reach Millennial Moms? Take a Cue from Your Employees
(Medical Marketing & Media, 26.06.15)

A few months ago, we started a discussion about how children’s hospitals needed to sharpen the definition of their target audience. Eighty-three percent of moms are Millennials who expect a different brand experience, which means not all moms consume information the same way. To target the entire mommy population, you need a more focused strategy.

What Life Sciences Marketers Can Learn from Hollywood About Buying Consulting and Agency Services
(MediaPost, 02.06.15)

Recently, The New York Times published an article headlined, “What Hollywood Can Teach Us About the Future of Work.” In it, the author marvels at the “Hollywood model” of work: where ad hoc teams carry out large and complex projects, requiring diverse talents with complementary skills. Per the article: “A project is identified; a team [of contractors] is assembled; it works together for precisely as long as is needed to complete the task; then the team disbands.”

“An innovation will get traction only if it helps people get something that they’re already doing in their lives done better.” —Clayton M. Christensen

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

Healthcare Branding Digest, March 12, 2015

Forget CIO vs CMO: Worry About the CIA of Data
(, 12.03.15)

The canary has been in the coalmine for a few years now. If we are to believe the reports we read, the ascendancy of Chief Marketing Officers (CMO) in influencing and controlling IT spend has effectively pushed CIO’s even further into the organization as a support function. The rise of the CMO has also coincided with the rise of big data analytics and has bestowed CMO’s with even more power than ever before.

Mobile Development in Healthcare Has Taken a Rocky Road
(Mobile Marketing Watch, 25.02.15)

Mobile development in healthcare has taken a rocky road. Early on, mobile app development basically involved building a remote login for the desktop application. You’d just try to navigate the web apps on a tablet or phone–it didn’t really workout. There are some vendors that are still trying to go down that path. Other options involve an HTML5 application, which is really just a mobile website.

Storytelling in a Multi-Channel Universe
(Medical Marketing & Media, 24.02.15)

Marketers are only beginning to understand the intricacies of sharing a brand story on multiple connected channels—and not just those in healthcare.

Hospital Yoga and Other Marketing Targeted at Women: Does It Work?
(Healthcare Dive, 17.02.15)

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, women make approximately 80% of healthcare decisions for their families. In an effort to meet their needs, some hospitals are beginning to offer luxury services or other amenities for women, in addition to top-notch medical care. The Ripa Center for Women’s Health and Wellness at Cooper University Health Care in New Jersey is a multi-specialty center that focuses specifically on women’s healthcare.

“Learning is the beginning of wealth. Learning is the beginning of health … Searching and learning is where the miracle process all begins. ” —Jim Rohn

Corporate Branding Digest, Feb. 5, 2015

7 Secrets of ‘Servant Leadership’ That Will Lead You to Success
(Inc., 26.01.15)

Over the past decade or so, I’ve heard a new term for leaders come into common usage: servant leader. The idea of servant leadership is that the typical hierarchy where employees are supposed to serve their bosses is turned upside down. Instead, leaders serve their people.

A Failure of Leadership or Design? Why Google Glass Flopped
(Forbes, 20.01.15)

With customer service, production and supply chain management, companies are constantly being told that they have to get it right first time. In new technology, however, that mantra is turned on its head.

Good Companies Make You Think. Great Companies Make You Feel (Video)
(Entrepreneur, 23.11.14)

As an entrepreneur, you probably spend a lot of time obsessing over data and metrics. And that’s all necessary if you want to build a solid, competitive brand. But if you want to create an epic, long-lasting brand, if you want to start a social movement, then you had best start making some decisions with your heart.

Pushing CEOs to Be Bold After the IPO
(Strategy + Business, 09.09.14)

Innovation is often the way for newly public companies to differentiate themselves from the competition. If shareholders want to motivate their CEOs to pursue visionary innovation objectives, they should encourage a strategy of both short-term job security and the cultivation of a long-term outlook.

“The best executive is one who has sense enough to pick good people to do what he wants done, and self-restraint enough to keep from meddling with them while they do it.” —Theodore Roosevelt

Corporate Branding Digest, Dec. 1, 2014

Five Reasons Why Privacy Is a Crisis for Your Brand
(Forbes, 13.11.14)

Two recent surveys have revealed that a majority of Americans not only fear cybercrime more than any other threat, but also don’t trust companies with the data they’ve acquired about them. This indicts our accepted approaches to corporate privacy policies, and the regulations to which they comply.

Ken Burns on ‘The Roosevelts’ and American Leadership
(Harvard Business Review, 18.09.14)

More than nine million viewers tuned in to watch the first episode of Ken Burns’s new film “The Roosevelts” on PBS—a sign that even in an era of reality TV and critically-acclaimed cable dramas, people want to understand more about real-life leaders. Burns spoke with HBR about how his work as a filmmaker has influenced how he thinks about leadership.

Why Top Tech CEOs Want Employees with Liberal Arts Degrees
(Fast Company, 28.08.14)

Venture capitalist Marc Andreessen once said that the average English degree holder is fated to become a shoe salesman, hawking wares to former classmates who were lucky enough to have majored in math. Meanwhile, PayPal cofounder Peter Thiel, who studied philosophy at Stanford, refers to degrees like his as “antiquated debt-fueled luxury goods.” Faced with such attacks on the liberal arts, it’s no wonder that interest in the humanities is waning. As the college year begins, many students are likely to take President Obama’s advice and forgo an art history degree for a certificate in skilled manufacturing or some other trade.

3 Keys to Hiring Great Bosses in Your Company
(Entrepreneur, 06.08.14)

Day-to-day operations—the way people treat each other, how they treat customers, whether they cooperate to get things done, etc.—has a huge impact on employee performance and morale. When your company is small, it is easier to observe company operations and relationships. As your business grows, there are too many moving parts for the lone entrepreneur to keep an eye on or to manage effectively.

“The greatest use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it.” —William James

Corporate Branding Digest, Sept. 16, 2014

Create the Best Environment for Creative Employees with These 6 Principles
(Entrepreneur, 09.09.14)

Business owners too commonly regard creative employees as a burden on the company’s financial performance. This focus overlooks the connection between properly managed creativity and the product inventions and innovations that drive sales and ultimately business success.

Would Steve Jobs or Ted Turner Succeed in These Big Data Obsessed Times?
(Forbes, 19.08.14)

Spurred by the data analytics revolution, corporations aim to collect and analyze reams of data. This data becomes the basis for modeling the future, which in turn can define growth strategies. This is what is meant by predictive and prescriptive analytics.

The Best Leaders ‘Talk the Walk’
(Harvard Business Review, 07.08.14)

One of the most ubiquitous aphorisms in business is that the best leaders understand the need to “walk the talk”—that is, their behavior and day-to-day actions have to match the aspirations they have for their colleagues and organization. But the more time I spend with game-changing innovators and high-performing companies, the more I appreciate the need for leaders to “talk the walk”—that is, to be able to explain, in language that is unique to their field and compelling to their colleagues and customers, why what they do matters and how they expect to win. The only sustainable form of business leadership is thought leadership. And leaders that think differently about their business invariably talk about it differently as well.

7 Traits Every Great Leader Has (But Doesn’t Talk About)
(The Muse, 07.07.14)

What does it take to be a great leader? Once upon a time, birth order and socioeconomic status were considered powerful determinants in who would successfully climb the ladder. Lately, though, the focus has shifted to personal qualities.

“I believe in innovation and that the way you get innovation is you fund research and you learn the facts.” —Bill Gates

Corporate Branding Digest, June 2, 2014

Tough Mudder’s CEO on Depending on a Team
(Fast Company, 28.05.14)

The CEO of what might be the world’s dirtiest, most difficult endurance event knows you’re only as good as your team.

How the Advice of the Past Can Save Us Now
(Entrepreneur, 09.05.14)

It was in 1954 that Peter Drucker first put forward his concept of “management by objectives” in his book, The Practice of Management. The basic premise of Drucker’s new idea was that organizations need to jointly identify and align goals and responsibilities between employees and management.

In a Crisis Leaders Need to Look for Order Rather than Control
(Forbes, 29.04.14)

We are all—particularly in the U.K.—well used to the idea that public-sector organizations have much to learn from their private-sector counterparts. With government budgets under increasing pressure, it is obvious that managers familiar with making the most of limited resources might have some useful insights to offer those trying to run schools, hospitals and the like in increasingly straitened circumstances. But the learning does not have to be all one-way traffic.

Data Goes Best with a Good Story (and Vice Versa)
(Harvard Business Review, 28.04.14)

Storytelling with data is having its moment in the journalism world. After leaving The New York Times last year, Nate Silver has launched his new data journalism venture with ESPN, former Washington Post blogger and columnist Ezra Klein is expanding his chart-filled approach beyond public policy at, and both the Times and the Post are starting their own data-driven sites to replace their departed stars.

“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you’ll be a success.” —Albert Schweitzer