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The real gamble is playing the same game as your competitors

by Bruce Tait, for Journal of Brand Strategy  •  Published October 2020

Abstract The essential task of strategy—particularly brand strategy—is to differentiate. But it can go wrong in many ways as managers and strategists are drawn inexorably back to category conventions. This paper argues for a more dedicated focus on differentiation and outlines important observations regarding the challenges inherent in defining such a brand strategy.… Read More → Download PDF →

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Do You Manage A Badge Brand? Think Again.

by Bruce Tait, for American City Business Journals  •  Published December 2015

Consider Gucci, BMW, Budweiser and Harley Davidson. These are some of the most powerful and valuable brands in the world, but they have something else in common. They all compete in categories where consumers believe that the brand they choose makes a statement about the kind of person they are. These are often… Read More →

The real gamble is playing the same game as your competitors

by Bruce Tait, for Journal of Brand Strategy  •  Published October 2020

Abstract The essential task of strategy—particularly brand strategy—is to differentiate. But it can go wrong in many ways as managers and strategists are drawn inexorably back to category conventions. This paper argues for a more dedicated focus on differentiation and outlines important observations regarding the challenges inherent in defining such a brand strategy.… Read More → Download PDF →

A New Approach to Target Marketing

by Bruce Tait, for American City Business Journals  •  Published December 2015

Is It Time To Start Thinking About Targeting Differently? The idea of a single “target group” has been a pillar of marketing for decades. Generations of marketers were taught that brands that try to be everything to everyone end up being nothing to anyone. It is inefficient to try to reach everyone. Moreover,… Read More →

5 Principles for Finding Your Brand’s Point of View

by Bruce Tait, for American City Business Journals  •  Published October 2015

Complete this statement: All our competitors believe X but we believe Y about the world/people/our industry. Great brands can do this easily. They can pinpoint their unique point of view and then drive that foundational difference through everything they do. This point of difference then becomes the focus for all of a well-differentiated… Read More →

The Mythic Status Brand Model: Blending Brain Science and Mythology to Create a New Brand Strategy Tool

by Bruce Tait, for Journal of Brand Strategy  •  Published Vol. 1, No. 4, Winter 2012–2013

There is no brand strategy job more fundamental than defining and articulating the core meaning behind a brand. If this is not done properly then all the execution that flows from that brand strategy is wasted effort and money. This paper shows how brand models can be important tools to help forge more profound and more differentiated brand strategy ideas because they provide new lenses for looking at a brand. This paper explains Tait Subler’s journey in creating the Mythic Status Brand Model by merging insights from modern brain science with lessons from ancient mythology. It demonstrates the successful application of the model for the Gucci brand. Read More → Download PDF → (http://taitsubler NULL.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Tait_p377_p388 NULL.pdf)

China Perspective I: The Value of Brands In An Environment of Distrust

by Bruce Tait  •  Published September 2007

If you visit a tier three city in China, you might get an idea of what service and product quality standards were like in the U.S. in the late 19th and early 20th centuries – when “buyer beware” and “snake oil salesmen” were hallmarks of the times. This historical perspective may in turn… Read More →

China Perspective II: Why Status Benefits Matter For Non-Luxury Brands

by Bruce Tait  •  Published September 2007

We all know status is a major factor for the super-rich in Shanghai or Hangzhou. But you might be as surprised as I was to find that status concerns also impact purchases for residents of the country’s much less affluent “tier three” cities, where most of China’s growth is expected in the next… Read More →

How ‘Marketing Science’ Undermines Brands

by Bruce Tait, for Admap  •  Published October 2004

Since starting Tait Subler we have had a tremendous opportunity to see the inner workings of marketing and brand management at a wide variety of companies. In this time, we’ve been shocked by the general malaise in the brand arena. There is a sense of hopelessness in many marketing departments where few dare… Read More →

The Rise of the Portfolio

by Bruce Tait, for Market Leader (UK)  •  Published Spring 2004

Everywhere you turn there are signs that the brand marketing approaches developed in the 20th century are becoming less useful in today’s environment. It used to be that monolithic brands could generate a tremendous degree of loyalty from large, homogeneous consumer segments. Coca-Cola could count on won-over consumers loyally ordering Coke virtually every… Read More →

Strategic Conclusions vs. Strategic Ideas: The Failure of “Marketing Science”

by Bruce Tait, for Brandweek  •  Published April 2002

Over the last 30 years the practice of marketing has become increasingly scientific. You can pay research companies to give you a quantitative (and therefore presumably “true”) measurement of virtually anything. Very few serious marketing companies would ever consider bringing a new product to market without some sort of stage-gate process that ensures… Read More →

From Share Leader to True Brand Leader

by Bruce Tait, for Admap  •  Published December 2007

There is a lot of advice available for the marketer who is number two or number three in a given category. Adam Morgan’s Eating the Big Fish, for example, is full of insights for brands that want to de-throne the share leader. But what about the category leader? Is it so simple for… Read More →

Do Gaps in Marketing Theory Make New Brands Fail?

by Bruce Tait, for Admap  •  Published June 2001

There is perhaps no activity more vital to growing a company than the development and launch of successful new product offerings. However, the success rate of new products has been very disappointing, despite the use of increasingly sophisticated research and testing approaches. The new-product problems faced by marketers could be the result of… Read More →

Is the Culture of Business Schools Bad For Brands?

by Bruce Tait, for Market Leader (UK)  •  Published Autumn 2002

As a foreigner living in the United States, I am often awe-struck by the power of the entrepreneurial spirit that seems to drive Americans. Neither the rigidity of a formal class structure nor the motivational numbing of socialism has ever gripped American culture. It is a country where patriotism is often based on… Read More →

The Case For Brand Consultancies

by Bruce Tait, for Admap  •  Published June 2002

Okay, I know what you’re thinking. This is an attempt to sell the concept of brand consulting – by a brand consultant. Well you’re right, but you might find our early learning about the emerging role of strategic brand consulting of interest. In starting a brand consulting practice focused solely on brand strategy,… Read More →

The Strategist’s Greatest Weapon

by Bruce Tait, for Admap  •  Published November 2005

When it comes to strategy, most marketers seem to feel that left-brain, analytical thinking is far more important than intuition or imagination. In fact, most marketers are striving to be taken more seriously in a business world where numbers rule, and many are forsaking creativity in an effort to become more scientific in… Read More →

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