Summary of Brand Babble

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  • Innovative


Marketing consultants Don and Heidi Schultz present a plain-language deconstruction of branding jargon in this guide for executives who want to understand branding and build brands. The book’s strength is its simplicity and clarity. At times, however, it reads like a series of articles that once were published separately, so that certain essential information is restated - often in virtually identical language. However, finds that the information in the book is valuable, as is the authors’ thoughtful approach to branding. Their book merits a read by marketers and corporate decision makers.

About the Authors

International branding consultant Don E. Schultz is Professor Emeritus of Integrated Marketing Communications at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, visiting professor at the Cranfield School of Management, Bedfordshire, U.K., and adjunct professor at Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia. He is president of Agora, Inc., an Evanston, Illinois, marketing and branding consulting firm, where Heidi F. Schultz is executive vice president. She is also a lecturer on marketing communications at Northwestern.



Understanding Brands

Brands are among any organization's most valuable assets, yet they are surrounded by conflicting, complicated messages. A brand is a tool to help make money for its owners. That's true whether it's a product, service, person, thing, idea, organization or even a country. Both the buyer and seller can identify a brand and its value.

Building and maintaining a brand is often expensive, but ultimately brands are supposed to make money for you, not cost you money. Don't get caught up in how much your brand managers want to spend to build your brand. Anybody can spend money. It's getting a return that takes skill. Focus on customer value and then decide how to present the brand to them.

A brand can create financial value for you and your customers, and build relationships with employees and other stakeholders so they'll keep supporting it. Brands last a long time, generate long-term income and even enter popular culture. But your brand doesn't belong entirely to your company; everyone touched by it has some ownership. You just get first dibs on its income. A good brand can't save a bad product or a poor business model, or overcome a lousy reputation...

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