H&R Block's tax preparation ad is built on a wrong insight

Bad advertising is caused by lack of deep insight

You’ve probably heard the famous proverb: in this world, nothing is certain but death and taxes. As correct as that fatalistic and sardonic saying is, in this day and age- it is also incomplete: During the tax filing season, one must add tax preparation ads to the list of inevitable. They are omnipresent. And, sadly, … Continue reading Bad advertising is caused by lack of deep insight

What went wrong with brand Guadalajara? Part 1/4

This is the first instalment of a series of “systematic problems of placebranding projects” illustrating the roadblock faced by the brand Guadalajara. These essays are intended to help practitioners -both city officials and consultants- to launch more successful and resistant brands. (Read the subsequent ones here, here and here.) Here we go again. Another city branding project is dealing with a … Continue reading What went wrong with brand Guadalajara? Part 1/4

Symbolic Meaning of Numbers

Are you considering to use numbers as a part of your brand? Then, you may want to learn about the symbolic meaning of numbers! For instance, why do you think 7 is the world's most popular number? Or does 5 have a gender? Which of the following is better to convey a sense of uniqueness? … Continue reading Symbolic Meaning of Numbers

How to Brand a Professional Association?

Back in the day, life was easier for professional associations: Whether you were a lawyer, or an accountant, or a doctor, you wanted to be a member of your professional association. Associations used to be the voice of their respective professions. They had unquestioned authority. Being a member was prestigious. Associations used to connect people through their … Continue reading How to Brand a Professional Association?

Top Trends in 2014

Another new year, another collection of top trend reports! What was trending in 2013? Which trends will still be relevant in 2014? And, what emerging trends you should pay attention? We have all the answers! Enjoy these great reports, share ‘em with your friends and let me know if you have any other good ones. … Continue reading Top Trends in 2014

Systemic Solutions for Toronto Raptors – Part 1

Under the management of Bryan Colangelo, Toronto Raptors has been getting progressively worse. That is a fact. We should not let that, however, overshadow the fact that this two-decade-old organization never had a successful GM since its inception (except Glen Grunwald.) Many bigwigs came and went, but the narrative of the Raptors stayed the same: … Continue reading Systemic Solutions for Toronto Raptors – Part 1

The evolution of private label brands

Did you know that private label brands (PL) have been around for almost a century? Back in 1928, it was the Swiss, who introduced the concept. And since then PL has been spreading like wildflowers. To be fair PL is more than spreading: it is also “evolving.” Today, we are witnessing a quiet renaissance, which … Continue reading The evolution of private label brands

When do people support change?

Did your key project fail to deliver the expected result? Has your organization undergone a massive restructuring process, yet nothing has changed? Did your city spend a fortune to brand itself, but in reality nobody has cared? Don’t feel bad, because you are not alone: Turns out 75% of organizational change projects do not yield the promised result. Let’s … Continue reading When do people support change?

Branding luxury

At first, this article might sound like a book review, but actually, it is about a miserable experience of mine and a much-welcomed solution. Here’s how the story goes. Years ago, my then-employer wanted to publish a sector-specific “best brands” survey. Our plan was to choose a couple of sectors (or verticals), determine the top … Continue reading Branding luxury

Do the Harlem Shake to Innovate

It’s blasphemous to think that Harlem Shake could have anything to do with innovation… It’s disrespectful to waste your precious time with such nonsense. I must be on drugs. But... I am not! Believe it or not, Harlem Shake meme teaches us something fundamental about the change process that takes place in biology. And that … Continue reading Do the Harlem Shake to Innovate