INSIGHTS

Fresh thinking on B2B brand positioning and marketing strategy.

When Brands Collide: How to Ensure a Successful M&A Brand Merger

In 2018, there were more nearly 50,000 M&A transactions around the world. From tech to healthcare, consolidation is on the rise, and companies small and large are placing their bets on M&A activity as a strategic driver of growth. In this environment, it’s safe to assume that most B2B…

All Aboard: Building Consensus Around a Global Branding Strategy

Successful B2B brands are built from the inside out. A company’s own people are the living embodiment of the brand in a way that is rarely the case with consumer businesses. How a B2B company’s people act, speak and even think will be far more effective in communicating the brand’s promise than…

How Brand Architecture Informs Brand Naming

To rename or not to rename? Clients often want to answer this question early in the project. And it makes sense. A new corporate or sub-brand name is not only very exciting, it’s also a huge investment. However, for this very reason, it’s may be best to postpone a naming decision until…

Branding Employee Volunteerism: Building Culture and Community

When it comes to maximizing the impact of corporate volunteer programs, a well thought-out branding and communications strategy can be your most powerful tool. This whitepaper shares seven principles for leveraging communications to enhance the long-term success and impact of your employee volunteer program.

Building a Sustainable Brand with Emotional Impact

Once, “environmentally conscious” could be tossed off as a corporate buzzword. And companies could claim that the cost of sustainability was just too high. But, driven by technological advancement, the price of sustainable technologies and practices has plummeted, and the potential for savings is impressive. A 2018 report by the Global Commission on the Economy…

Identity Issues: Why Brand Can’t Be Ignored During Corporate Break-Ups

As behemoths are built, so do they separate. Corporate spinoffs are often in the news these days. From Bayer, to HP Enterprise, to DowDupont, many major conglomerates are spinning off divisions in hopes that narrowed focuses will result in easier management—and thus, higher profits. Siemens AG is one of the most prolific dismantlers, carving…

Conducting a Visual Brand Audit

A comprehensive brand audit — an analysis of the current state of a brand and its position in the marketplace — is the foundation of any new brand or rebranding initiative. By determining the strengths and weaknesses of a brand in relation to its market and competitors, the audit helps navigate a clear path to a differentiated…

Building a Recruitment Brand for Gen Z

Although it seems like just yesterday we were reading about the rise of the millennials, a new generation is hovering outside the threshold of the corporate world. Generation Z is about to hit the workforce, and their unique motivations will force brands to reevaluate their internal and external strategies. While businesses have a few years…

Keeping it Real: The Emergence of Authenticity in Design

In the past few years, we’ve seen “authenticity” emerge as a theme in branding and design; this year, it has exponentially increased in importance and value. That’s understandable: in a world where “fake” news can dominate the political conversation and Instagram stars turn out to be imposters, consumers have become increasingly cynical.

A…

The Brand Supplement: When Hospitals Invest, Branding Improves ROI

Hospitals today are investing billions of dollars: purchasing, acquiring, merging, integrating, upgrading, all with the goal of improving patient care at an affordable cost. But to get the most out of these investments – to connect with patients, healthcare professionals, and the communities they serve – hospitals must invest in, and leverage, one of their most important business assets: their brand.

A Tale of Two Announcements: Communicating Big News at Large Organizations

Two regional banks’ futures are on the line, and all stakeholders await the decisions of the top brass: will a merger-of-equals result in lay-offs? At large firms today, most communication happens through email, and that’s how a lot of news is delivered (hopefully employees never have to learn company news via…

Brand Behavior: Does Your Company Walk the Walk?

What is brand behavior? Simply put, brand behavior is how your brand interacts and reacts with real customers in the real marketplace. While your positioning statement may say one thing about your values and strengths, truly demonstrating them is another matter.
A missed opportunity
Picture this. You’re sitting at your desk flipping through a…

Can CSR Impact Employees’ Perceptions About Their Workplace?

For most companies, and particularly those in the B2B space, employees represent the most powerful brand communications channel. To be true brand ambassadors, employees must feel a sense of shared purpose, a fundamental connection to the company’s mission, vision and values, and an understanding of how they contribute to the company’s success. Engaging…

For M&A Success, Put Branding in the IMO Loop

When large, complex organizations combine – whether through M&A or internal reorganization – a strong new brand can be the essential glue that holds the new entity together, both internally and in the minds of customers.

But a new brand is just one element in the successful integration of two organizations. There are myriad other…

Rethinking Brand Identity After a Merger: A Visual History

With M&A activity at record levels, marketing thought leadership is abuzz with tips and tricks for maximizing the effectiveness of brand mergers. Such pieces often center on how to align corporate cultures and boost internal engagement. Without a doubt, these are vital issues that demand consideration. But is today’s culture craze sidestepping…

Building a Foundation for Successful B2B Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is gaining momentum across the marketing landscape, but rapid growth sometimes comes with growing pains. Consumer influencer marketing in particular has often nabbed the wrong kind of earned media.

One of the more notorious episodes: a 2017 video spot featuring influencer Kendall Jenner handing a Pepsi to a police officer at a staged…

The Curious Case of Yahoo’s (Missing) Identity

A lot has been written about the ‘prolonged demise’ of Yahoo, which is still puttering along, despite its purchase by Verizon Media in 2017. The internet company has suffered a tumultuous and tiring 25-year identity crisis. This was perhaps most famously crystalized in the leaked “Peanut Butter Manifesto,”an internal memo from 2006 that…

Color Series: Optimistic Orange

Frank Sinatra is quoted as saying, “Orange is the happiest color.” And he isn’t alone in thinking that, as brands often choose to incorporate orange into their logos as a way of infusing a sense of fun, cheeriness, warm exuberance, and approachability.

Indeed, it is energetic and positive, uplifting and cheerful. The color orange…