All posts by Martin Jelsema

About Martin Jelsema

Coming up on 50-years doing advertising, branding, market research and new product marketing.

Brand differentiation: a key plank in the branding platform

A differentiated brand stands outIn building a brand platform from which your branding strategies, decisions, elements and activities will arise; the most significant plank is probably the way you plan to differentiate your brand.

This is how you will determine your positioning strategy. It is the thing that will set you apart from competitors in the minds of your customers and prospects.

So I will devote several blogs to this subject.

In this post I’ll generally speak to the importance of differentiation and delineate some guidelines in formulating a differentiation strategy. Then in subsequent posts I’ll describe several approaches and differentiating concepts. Continue reading Brand differentiation: a key plank in the branding platform

Corporate identity advertising: mostly biased platitudes?

Beating your corporate identity drumI read a trade article yesterday about a company that was beginning, in their words, “a branding campaign” by sponsoring a supplement in a major newspaper.

It sounded a lot like a campaign type we used to call “Corporate identity advertising”. As an agency rep, we encouraged clients to do corporate identity campaigns. It was good for them and for the agency – we got to place these ads in Fortune, Forbes and Business Week, so we got agency recognition as well as pretty large commissions.

Today, I say every ad a client places is part of a branding campaign. Continue reading Corporate identity advertising: mostly biased platitudes?

Coined word brand names: make them easy to take in

Selling prescription drugsNaming can be tricky. Especially when you’re branding with a coined word name

Here’s an example: there’s a prescription drug on the market that’s pronounced acifex, according to the voice-over in the commercial. Yet it’s spelled AcipHex.

Now with no prompting, wouldn’t you pronounce the word acip-hex? I would. That’s because of the uppercase H making me think there are two words. Continue reading Coined word brand names: make them easy to take in

Brand platforms should contain industry and product category vitals

Industry info for your brand platformThis plank in a brand platform has to do with your industry and your product category(s).

I touched on this with the post about competitive intelligence. But now, from a little different perspective, I’ll .

I would first want to know what industry analysts think of the industry in general, and how they define product categories. These opinions and observations are probably more impartial than your own, and may be more from a consumer’s eye view. There are publicly-available reports from Standard and Poors, Hudsons, Dun and Bradstreet as well as research materials from investment brokers. Continue reading Brand platforms should contain industry and product category vitals

Branding for relationships, branding for referrals

Branding is being discussed more often in relation to Internet marketing, and more specifically, Web2.0 social media sites.

Rohit Bhargava, SVP at Ogilvy PRSo this past noon I attended a BtoB webinar conducted by Rohit Bhargava, SVP at Ogilvy Public Relations. His subject? How to Get Clients to Love Your Brand…And Spread the Word About It.” You can read his blog at Influential Marketing Blog.

It was VERY interesting

It appears that social networking as a community building activity is a major element in branding for many companies. And it will grow for others. Continue reading Branding for relationships, branding for referrals

An effective brand name will not describe the business

There seems to be a need for entrepreneurs to brand their business by describing it.

Descriptive names usually become initialsI suppose they’re afraid people won’t know what they do if the name doesn’t describe the offering. I’d be more afraid that the name doesn’t differentiate the business from its competitors.

Once you name the business or service descriptively, you’ve named a product category, and your name becomes generic and undifferentiated. Continue reading An effective brand name will not describe the business