January 2018
Out of Step and Missing Out

Jeffrey Spear - President, Studio Spear

Jeff Spear

Assuming your industry is well established, there are strong brands dominating the category. These are the ones described as trusted, reliable and preferred. It is all too common, however, to find brands that are misunderstood, poorly managed, and terribly underutilized.


All you need to do is wander the aisles at a trade event or in your neighborhood supermarket. While you may see a few recognizable names, there will be an overwhelming shortage of visible, unique, memorable and compelling brand presentations. The number of products that go unrecognized, as well as the community of producers who willingly endure quiet anonymity, is stunning.

From a marketing perspective, this represents untapped opportunity across every sales channel. For brand owners seriously pursuing growth, this is a dream come true.

When it comes to brand building, a surprisingly large number of promotional activities fail to communicate and/or champion attributes such as freshness, flavor, aroma, performance and overall integrity of product. Statements such as "It sells itself," "We generate profits" or "Customers will run to your store" are generic and uninspired. If the audience can say "I should hope so,” then something more is needed.

One of the most obvious opportunities for impact is infusing your offer with emotionally stimulating, engaging and memorable content. It is statistically proven that, when emotions are triggered in a marketing context, the potential for sales impact increases significantly.

It takes leadership to embrace these ideas. And leadership is not without some degree of risk. Accordingly, here are five essential elements of effective brand building that will help you overcome obstacles in pursuit of your growth agenda:

1. Conduct research.
Understand industry dynamics, trends and preferences. Know your competitors and, more importantly, know who your buyers are and what they want.

2. WIIFM (What's In It For Me)
Speak directly to your customer. Tell them what you (your company and its products) can and will do for them.

3. Be visible.
Attract attention and distinguish yourselves from the herd. There's nothing special about a brand that merely follows the leader.

4. Excite the senses.
Generate impact with intelligence, wit and style. Knowing that food is an emotional category, do whatever it takes to get people drooling.

5. Be remarkable.
Make something that is so desirable it's worth talking about.

Brand building for many marketers is still misunderstood and has a long way to go. There are plenty of operators who are satisfied with the status quo and are willing to stay the course. For those who are energized, visionary, enthusiastic and interested in category leadership, the opportunities for effective branding and enterprise growth are enormous.


If the time has come to overhaul, update and re-invigorate your brand image, or you'd like to change up your marketing program, please call 904 685 2135 - ask for Jeff Spear. You can also contact Jeff via email: jeff@studiospear.com.

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