August 25, 2016

There’s nothing like the first half of a holiday. Time stretches out ahead of you and slowly the stresses and strains of everyday life ebb away. And if you can force yourself away from your phone, an unusual feeling appears over the horizon. Freedom.


But around halfway through, reality starts edging its way back into your consciousness. You resist it li...

August 4, 2016

There used to be a targeting model called the 4 A’s. Availables, Acceptors, Adopters and Adorers. The idea was simple. First, you decided which of these was your best target for growth. Then you worked out how you wanted your brand’s relationship with that target to develop.


The model was laid out left to right, Availables to Adorers. The Holy Gr...

July 21, 2016

OK, I admit it. I do have rather tidy bookshelves. My desk can look like I’ve finished for the day when I’m actually still working. I can often think of a better way of other people doing things. I work for myself. But a ‘freak’?


There’s been much talk of Control recently. Most obviously, the Leave campaign said the UK was go...

July 7, 2016

‘Independence Day’, for me, is Bruce Springsteen’s saddest song. It tells the story of a son’s relationship with his father and how the time has finally come for the son to leave home:


Just say goodbye it’s Independence Day

It’s Independence Day this time


On one level the son simply wants his father to accept the fact that nothing is going...

June 22, 2016

Are you feeling the fear? Can you smell it? It’s everywhere. Remainers and Leavers, politicians on both sides, big and small business, countries inside and outside the EU. 


So where are you going to put your cross? In 24 hours we all have to decide. In about 48, we’ll know the outcome. Then we'll have to live with the...

June 9, 2016

Killer name, Byron Sharp, isn’t it? Passionate, self-destructive Romantic meets rapier wit that will cut you to shreds.


Ever since his book, How Brands Grow, came out in 2010, Sharp’s influence in marketing has been increasing. It’s now even prompting a debate on whether we’ll soon see the end of segmentation, targeting and positioning as we know it.


For those of you...

May 26, 2016

Back in April, we saw a puppy running loose on a train station platform. A black Labrador, no more than 4 months old, bouncing around on its oversized paws. There was a boy chasing after it. “Must have slipped off its lead,” we thought.


Then we noticed the boy was actually trying to feed it some left-over burger. The dog seemed more interested in saying hello to...

May 12, 2016

Let’s start with 'insight’. Everyone in marketing agrees you need insight. So how come if you ask for a definition, everyone gives you a different answer?


When the word first surfaced around brands, there was an attempt to give it a specific meaning. Diageo defined it as 'a penetrating discovery into consumer motivations applied to unlock growth'.


That worked for a t...

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