Words

What goes into a Brand Bible?

I love launching new brands. In fact, I’m currently helping four startups either conceive their brand from scratch or rethink their brand as they start to get traction and need to position themselves more effectively. One of my favourite parts of the exercise is brainstorming all the elements of the core brand – things like the

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Hmmm, I wonder how many people I can annoy with this advertising?

The point of advertising is to engage people, in order to sell them stuff. Pretty simple. Yes, there are a number of ways to engage. You can make them smile, make them laugh, pull their heartstrings, even stir outrage that drives them to action. As a general rule, however, annoying people into buying your product isn’t

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The implosion of media. Who saw it coming?

Ian Gill is the author of No News Is Bad News. He’s an experienced journalist, documentarian, entrepreneur and catalyst for boundary-breaking media. According to Gill, legacy media has completely missed the boat when it comes to public discourse. Instead of dwelling on new technology and hedge-fund backed expansion as a panacea, Gill believes we need to rethink the

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Brexit, Trump, and the Brand of Over Simplicity

A brand is designed to simplify complex concepts. But in the real world, simplification isn’t always smart. Britain voted with a simple  Yes / No referendum to abandon membership in the EU, a partnership that had a multidimensional, complex impact on the lives of ordinary citizens – an impact that is just now coming to

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Tim Hortons: a cautionary tale of bean counters and brands.

A recent Globe and Mail story described the ‘brutal’ transformation of beloved Canadian restaurant brand Tim Hortons. The cause of the messy shift? Budget cuts by Tim’s new owners – Brazilian holding company 3G Capital and Restaurant Brands International (RBI). I was invited by Mark Brennae of CFAX radio to chat about this disruption. If

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Why did the Pepsi Kendall Jenner ad fail? Brand overreach.

Recently, Pepsi pulled a monumental two minute ad starring Kendall Jenner as the girl who, well, solved social injustice with a fist bump and soda. The ad was so wrong on so many fronts. Instead of rehashing the minutiae, I’ll simply point you to this story by Adweek that did a fine review of the brand

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You’re not a commodity brand. Now prove it.

This is the manuscript of a brand speech Marc delivered on being commodity brand, March 9th at a financial managers’ conference in British Columbia, Canada. Our world has grown incredibly small. Remember geographically putting a fence around your business? Gone. Now, if you want to set up shop, you can do it anywhere in the

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Is Our Culture Ready for Massive Societal Change?

Todd Sivers is an experienced personal coach with a unique system for helping people create positive change. To him, the tension we’re seeing between our regressive politics and our unprecedented technological leaps is symptomatic of global growing pains. But are we ready for a massive societal change? In this conversation, we chat about everything from

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