Ideal Advertising - IA

I feel privileged to be working with some fascinating brands and their teams not just on articulating their brand propositions (strategy), but also on the plans and actions to get these heard (tactics). It is the combination of both that provides depth, learning and continuous enjoyment in the fast paced world of 21st century brand […]

Pure-Play Brands, Unicorns & Trust

Tesla just overtook Ford Motor Company in market value. Or in other words, a company that is barely a decade old and sells 26’000 cars a year is worth more than a century old company finding every year more than 3.6 million customers around the globe. What do the new kids on the block – […]

The future of cars will remain emotional

When will we finally let go of the steering wheel? When will the first drone cars take off ? Markus Kramer was invited to contribute to this years Geneva Car Show Edition of GIMS - and embarks on a fictional journey through time. (originally published in print format as part of the 'Geneva International Motor […]

2017 Strategic Brand & Communication Prognosis

Brand & Communication Prognosis 2017:  Thank you to the many of you who have given a little bit of their valuable time to complete my short “Brand Impact 2017” survey over the festive season - Happy New Year! Cutting to the chase: what's in it for 2017? The primary challenges of tackling increasingly complex, digital […]

Snapchatization is the name of the game

The name of the game is Snapchatization or indeed and perhaps even better: Snap-Ability. At this stage, there are three pivotal questions that need to be raised: Why is it important for marketers, brand managers and entrepreneurs to understand the Snapchatization effect on media consumption? What are the implications of Snapchatization on digital PR, social […]

Turbocharging Brand Strategy

Analyzing brand strategy is sometimes confused with analyzing the company. Over the past year, I had the pleasure of engaging with arguably the world’s most iconic manufacturer of sports cars: Ferrari! It is, I believe, worthwhile contemplating some of the core branding principles with broader applicability for any marketer, communications professional and business leader looking […]

Inner Culture Par Excellence

“Some people think luxury is the opposite of poverty. It is not. It is the opposite of vulgarity.” - Coco Chanel In an ever more connected world it is evident that we are succeeding in boosting the quantity and speed of connections. However, it is not only the quantity of connections but also their quality that, […]

Targeting Like a Luxury Brand

Conventional marketers are measuring the right things with the wrong measurement instruments. The severe addiction of judging performance by traffic, ratings, online engagement percentages, followers and conversion rates is becoming almost preposterous. The management consultant and one of the greatest statisticians of all time William Edwards Deming stated that: “The most important things cannot be […]

Scarcity: a High Luxury Principle hard to spot

Looking at the fleeting pace of 21st century business models, luxury represents a stark contrast. Timeless, enduring, always striving for penultimate quality, sophistication and  differentiation at the cost of being polarizing. The principles that underpin the very notion of luxury have a lot to teach us – particularly in times of rapid acceleration. Throughout the […]

The Changing Nature of Luxury Customers

When exploring what drives change (not just for luxury customers), it is often helpful to adopt an outside perspective. What provides the strategic canvas when looking at broader shifts on how customer, brands and their propositions evolve? One such approach is to take a seat in a helicopter and look at the epitome of branding: […]

Strategic Brand & Communication Trends for 2016

Up and Onwards to a Year of Greatness! Take a look past the operational implications of taking your brand digital, social and mobile. Beyond the aspects of continuing to build Omni channel mechanics, organizational alignment and marketing effectiveness. We are all fully into these disciplines already – but what are the Communication Trends to watch […]

When Brand Meaning become your 3rd Place

Note: first written for and published in Brand Quarterly Global Edition Jul 15 How come a 6-year old company offering on-demand car service (if you haven’t heard of them, they go by the name of Uber) can be worth $40 billion? And why is Priceline worth as much as Ford Motor Company (about $60b), all […]

The Pursuit of Meaning

The great Greek philosophers put the meaning of life over everything else - from which all doing would draw value and utility. For businesses, value and meaning were once simple concepts, contained in the practical aspects of a product. A formula where function and utility would define a product, where the product was the brand […]

What Company Culture can learn from Luxury Brands

Based on concepts as old as humanity itself, luxury represents the discipline of branding in its finest essence and stands true at the pinnacle of differentiation. It is the antidote of commoditization. The intangibles within luxury are powerful drivers of growth, generating consistently high profit margins and customer loyalty beyond ‘points and rewards schemes’. Even […]

The Concierge: Luxury or Commodity?

'Get our credit card and we’ll give you free ‘Concierge’ service; sign up for our premium bank account and we’ll help you arrange your life beautifully, buy a VERTU and concierge comes for free … and if you’re in the US, buy a Hyundai Equus' … “because your convenience is the greatest luxury of all”(1) […]

What can Executive Leadership learn from Luxury?

What makes for good leadership? There are as many books as there are opinions on this topic. One way to look at this question is to look at industries and areas that are doing something right. So why look at Luxury as a proxy? Firstly, let’s establish that luxury as whole is an industry that […]

The Value of Upstream

Hold your breath: Marketing is approaching its end of days – and fast. So at least predict a many contemporary thinkers. But is it - really? The discipline is in transformation – always has been and will forever be - but a dying discipline? No doubt about it: we are living through the biggest revolution […]

Make Things Beautiful

So you have a territory of differentiation. But more often than not, you won’t be alone. In fact chances are that your segment is heavily commoditized – unless you are a luxury brand, of course. Why should this be of interest? Let me try and explain this for the company I work for: Aston Martin. […]

CRM – A model of the past?

Hundreds, thousands or even millions of valuable ‘customer relationships’ all neatly organised and stored in a single centric customer database, just sitting there to be tapped into and used for the benefit of squeezing more money out of customers – and of course, resulting in higher loyalty rates and improved bottom lines. Thanks to technology, […]

Unpacking the Digital & Luxury Conundrum

Surprisingly perhaps, marketing is a relatively nascent discipline in luxury companies. While the value of ‘brand’ is highly recognised, of course, the level of marketing sophistication behind the scenes has not been high on the agenda of executives until recently. Hermes, for example, did not even have a website until three years ago. Why this […]

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