Communities of Purpose – Part 2

(part I here)

People have aggregated into communities because of shared purposes since time began. A shared cave to avoid getting eaten by saber-toothed tigers. Walled medieval villages to make silk or conduct trade. Suburbs to avoid cities, and cities to avoid the country. Every community in the real world got together, and stayed together (or not) because its residents needed one another to accomplish something(s).

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Communities of Purpose – Part 1

I speak at conferences and company events, and one of my lines always gets a lot of knowing chuckles: “Nobody wakes up in the morning wishing they had a closer relationship with their toothpaste.”

So why are so many brands working so hard (and spending so much money) trying to do just that?

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The Inanity of Online Comments

Have you ever commented at the end of an online news story or blog post? I have, and then almost always wondered why I did so. A few of the comments I received on my latest column in Advertising Age this week got me thinking even more about the entire shebang.

My conclusion is that not only is it a waste of time most of the time, but it actually denigrates if not wholly blows up the very idea of conversation.

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Why Business is Different Now

Book Review: The End of Business As Usual: Rewire the Way You Work to Succeed in the Consumer Revolution by Brian Solis

People toss around the terms “thought leader” and “social media expert” lightly these days, but Brian Solis is one of the few people who actually lives up to those names. In The End of Business as Usual, Solis shows how the widespread use of social media is fundamentally changing the business environment.

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Who Knows Your Brand Promise?

Back in March, I wrote a piece on change and on how I believed CEOs aren't interested in change. Last week, I wrote about how CEOs are the brand champions and how the buck stops with them. I followed that up with a post asking CEOs if they put themselves out there, if they stand behind and in front of their brands. As of this moment, I have only received one response to that challenge.

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Achieving Brand Integrity

For the last couple of years, I've been fully engaged in the top social media platforms (Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+), but recently I added Pinterest to my list of social media addictions. And I've become obsessed with infographics! As you can imagine, the infographics that I've pinned all relate to customer experience, customer service, and employee engagement. Any time I find one that's worth saving and sharing, I pin it.

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They Wear Nike on Mars, Right?

There’s a four-week mission to Mars taking place right now, complete with a Mars landing module known as the LEM, a full-size Mars rover, a mobile quarantine unit, a bio lab and an interplanetary excavation unit. Only the “mission” is not actually taking place on Mars, it’s taking place on Manhattan’s Upper East Side inside the 55,000-foot Park Avenue Armory

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What’s Your Addiction?

Brand as business bit:  A couple of sound bites connected for me recently.

In a recent Bloomberg BusinessWeek piece entitled, “Has CNN’s All-News Strategy Become Old News?,” Alex Sherman writes about the cable networks’ reliance on “the story” to drive its audiences, unlike other networks that balance breaking news with opinions and personalities.  Phil Grffin, president of MSNBC, observed:

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The Semantics of Branding

I may be dim, but have you ever thought about how people talk about brands? The brand stands for something. The brand does this or that. The brand value is whatever. The brand has a conversation with people. The brand tells stories.

Guess what? There’s no such thing as “the brand.” It has no consciousness or personality. It can’t do things. It simply isn’t.

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Love/Hate: Why Disliked Brands Prosper

Something brand owners strive for is that elusive magic of being loved by consumers. Brands like Apple, Google, Southwest Airlines, and others have earned enduring positive regard among consumers, and those companies outdo their peers in part because of the brand equity they have built. But what about brands people don’t like? Oddly, some of those survive quite nicely and even prosper.

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