This is the second part of our review of the top blog posts of 2013.
6. Creating replicable brand properties (July)
We've been working with marketing teams to help them create replicable brand properties that can be amplified over a number of years, rather than re-inventing marketing plans each year. A highlight of 2013 was going to see the highlight of the 3rd edition of the Carling "Be the Coach" campaign in South Africa, along with 85,000 people at Soccer City in Soweto. Soccer fans vote by mobile phone to pick the teams for the Carling Black Label Cup between the Kaiser Chiefs and The Orlando Pirates, South Africa's top 2 teams. And the votes have grown from 11 million in year 1 to a staggering 22 million in year 3.
7. Why Red Bull is the King of Content (and you're probably a pauper) (August)
As brands are seduced by the idea of creating branded content, this was an important reality check. Red Bull are kings of content, because they have a lifestyle brand idea that lends it to content creation, plus they invest huge amounts in people and budget to do it well.
Many other brands don't have the same type of brand idea, nor the same budgets, so should think twice before trying to become brand publishers.
8. Digitally empowering your business (August)
One of the coolest books of the year was "Velocity" by Nike's head of digital business, Stefan Olander. It showed how the biggest opportunity in our digital age is not social media, but rather digitally powering your business by creating new services. Nike did this with Nike+iPod and the Fuel Band. However, my watchouts were that to a Nike you need:
i) top talent, both creative and technical
ii) highlighting a genuine consumer need, and a service that meets this better than current offers
iii) a way to brand the service, and ideally charge for it, to create a viable business model
iv) significant investment to create the service, and then to drive traffic to it
9. Amplify and enrich your brand experience (Nov)
In this post we looked at how to enrich your brand experience using language, narrative and navigation. Nespresso was used as an example of a brand that has done this beautifully.
10. Aston Martin's bonkers brand extension bites the dust (Dec)
By the end of 2013 Aston Martin saw reason and finally put the gun to the head of the ridiculous Cygnet City car, a re-skinned Toyota IQ sold for £30,000 to the grand total of 142 people. The only upside of this bit of brand madness is the value of it as an eample of what NOT to do when stretching your brand: the ultimate example of a brand extension that is all sizzle and absolutely zero product sausage.