August 24, 2005
"The primary focus of your brand message must be on how special you are, not how cheap you are. The goal must be to sell the distinctive quality of the brand."
- Kerry Light, Brand Strategist
|In this issue:
AbuLLard took some time off to go to the beach this month... it was just too hot not to. While he was there he couldn't help but notice all the branded merchandise -- food items, chairs, coolers, shirts, sports equipment, just to name a few. And as he listened to the music of the Beach BuLLs in the background he hummed to himself, "Wish they all could be CattLeLogos Brands."
And he began to think about all those really popular brands and about how they became household names, and how they stayed that way. Being a buLL that likes lists of things, and catchy ways of remembering things, he thought "Hmm. They are all "CattLeLogos" brands when you look at what each of the letters of CattLeLogos stands for...
Most brands that survive in popular culture from one generation to the next are:
C - Consistent - they have used common elements, colors, and themes in all their marketing so they are immediately recognizable;
A - Appropriate - they understand their target market and appeal to their sensitbilities;
T - Total - they know that a brand is a combination of everything a company does, not just its image, but its messages and behavior as well;
T - Touchable - they are aware of all the "touch points" between their company and their customers and have a business process that responds to customer input;
L - Legends - they have a history that includes legendary figures, events, or products;
E - Easy to Remember - they have simple graphics and clear messages that are easy for people to remember and to repeat;
L - Lovable - they have created a strong bond with customers and become "Love Marks";
O - Ownership - they have taken ownership of their brand, protected it from infringement, copying or vandalism;
G - Grateful - they are grateful to loyal customers and reward them;
O - Outstanding - they have produced outstanding products or services that stand the test of time;
S - Stories - they have wonderful stories to tell about the history of the brand and customer experiences.
We have touched on many of these things in previous newsletters. And when AbuLLard gets back from the beach and gets the sand out of his hooves, he'll surely have more to say on these and other topics.
Audhumbla's Eye on the Internet
When businesses move on-line, an early question that must be answered is “How Much Information is Too Much” for your website - i.e., what information is important to your customers and drumming up new sales versus what information is confidential and gives away your corporate secrets. And be prepared, everyone you know will have an opinion if you let them give it to you.
Every business has its own specific needs but a general rule of thumb is public beachfront gets more visits than private beachfront, i.e., for most of us it’s better to have our information out there available to the public on our websites than to have it fenced off behind passwords.
The basics of on-line beachfront start with 4 simple rules regarding customers and their behavior when surfing the net. As a seller, customers need to know the following about me:
The information that answers these questions is the foundation for your beachfront on the net. It’s the information on which customers surf – and your websites should have this from Day One.
Look at your business. What's your line, e.g., is it retail goods? If yes, it’s more important that customers know your current product inventory or have an obvious way of asking you questions about your inventory. Be prepared to spend time and effort on customer service in either case. Or is your line retail services? If so, your qualifications and credentials become very important and should be readily found on your website.
Let’s talk prices. This tends to be perhaps the most confusing item in what should or should not be available to surfers. The rule is simple – if you would post prices in your place of business (on the wall, in a menu, on the shelf, in collateral), go ahead and put them out there on the net. Or if your business operates a proposal and quote basis, tell your customers that instead. Similarly, only an ingénue would post their mark-ups on their store’s wall – so similar prudence is expected when posting to the net.
Brand Element of the Month:
Quaker Chroma Imaging
One of the hardest things for any of us to do is to see ourselves through others' eyes. As companies, we get caught up in the details of what we do. We don't see the "big" picture -- how we impact our community or our market.
We recently had a strategy session with a client, Quaker Chroma Imaging, or "QCI" as they call themselves. QCI is a merger of two established printing and photography companies that have a long history of producing very high quality results for their clients. One of the capabilities they wanted to feature was their ability to produce high quality, outdoor banners.
The QCI team saw themselves through their technology and knew they could produce the best output for their clients. They have kept pace with developments in color printing technologies and have state of the art equipment at their facility in Center City Philadelphia. By combining staff for the two companies they have an "all-star" team of technicians who understand the craft of printing.
We looked at some of the work they had done and said, "Wow. You are the responsible for the new image of Philadelphia." Their clients include major institutions in the Greater Philadelphia Region and they are the premier source for outdoor display ads that are visible throughout the city -- from the Art Museum to the Avenue of the Arts.
And they have wonderful stories to tell that illustrate how their customers have come to rely on them when getting the right image really matters... whether a picture of the Pope blessing a grandchild or display advertising at a stadium opening... their customers know they can count of QCI to do it right.
A few days after our session we got a copy of a proposed ad from Haley Dervinis, the Marketing Coordinator (copy at right). Our response, "Only have one thing to say. WOW! Looks great. The message, the images capture exactly what we were going for! We love clients like you – the ones who get it!"
HayLoise's Books of the Month
Are there any books that have given you important insights into
Hayloise loves to laugh, and would like to share one of the most hilariously funny books she’s ever read with all of you. It's called the "Eyre Affair."
Suspend reality for a moment. This detective story takes place in Great Britian in 1985, but not the Great Britian we all know. Here the citizens are in love with literature. The arch villain of the novel, Acheron Hades, is stealing characters from books and holding them for ransom.
If a character is stolen from a book, it only changes one book. However, if a character is stolen from the original manuscript all the copies in print are changed. Hades has begun attacking original manuscripts; he has his eyes on Jane Eyre. How will he be stopped?
Thursday Next, a special operative for the Literary Division of the Special Operations Network is on the case. Laugh your way through this delightful book as Thursday uses her ingenuity to restore Jane to her rightful place.
"What does this book have to do with branding?" You ask. Well the best I can say is at CattLeLogos we love to laugh, and humor is a significant part of our brand. We also are delighted whenever we get to read a well crafted book, written by someone who knows how to use language. It's a delightful vacation read.
Click on the book cover image to go to its page on Amazon.com
of the Month
“The visual image is a kind of tripwire for the emotions.”
– Diane Ackerman
The Art of Throwing Cow Pies...
A recent article on the front-page Wall Street Journal story was headlined, "Smelling Opportunity, Farming Towns Bet on Cow-Pie Throws." Yes it had to do with the championships of throwing cow poop. And the grand champion? A woman named Laura Wilcox. "Honestly, she's no relation," swears Jean. Laura came out of nowhere (actually, the grandstand, when a friend paid her $5 entry fee) to win the competition in Tilden, Neb., earning her a trip to the "world championship" in Beaver, WI.
Wilcox (Laura that is) had never thrown a cow pie before but said, "I've touched far worse things than dried cow poop." When Wilcox actually won the event, the resulting publicity made her uneasy. "Would you like to be known for that?" she said.
Strive to Be Noticed
... and Remembered!
A lady, sitting next to Raymond Loewy at dinner, struck up a
conversation. And you thought those capital "L's" in CattLeLogos were an
A lady, sitting next to Raymond Loewy at dinner, struck up a
And you thought those capital "L's" in CattLeLogos were an accident?
Do you like our newsletter? We would love to work with you on developing a newsletter for your business.
Give us a call: 215.732.1553 or contact us by e-mail.
Copyright 2005 CattLeLogos Brand Management Systems, LLC. All rights reserved.
CattLeLogos is a Registered Trademark of CattLeLogos Brand
Management Systems, LLC.
Published August 24, 2005