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My John Grant notes

Here's my summary of Paul's John Grant podcast. My apologies for the messyness of the notes.

John and Paul are both very smart.

John's second book after image was all about knowledge brands e.g. Google, Wikipedia & ebay rather than image brands such as Levi's and Coca-Cola. This helps put it into context looking back.

It is now a quest for knowledge not information. Education is an important role - how many people outside of Islington actually know what a smoothie is?

Research should be used as basically extra meetings for cracking problems or isolating problems

The future of marketing is molecular. A coherent set of ideas that all fit together like a molecule. It should seem as if it is all from the same author

Brands are about value creation and new adventures. For FMCG innovation has been centralised and becomes the news. Google doesn’t advertise. It relies on constant innovation and quality of service.

More important than marketing or branding strategy is business.
1. where does the business need to go?
2. It's not a marketing thought
3. It's a business decision
4. Ignore your brand and get on with business

Successful brands work by working towards and overall goal. E.g. Nike.
> They didn't want to be McSport
> They decided to move closer to sport through facilitation.
> They created distinct groups or cells within the company
> These groups acted autonomuosly but all pulled in the same direction
> Result the most successful sports brand on earth

Traditional through the line marketing is pointless. It is based on repitition, creates cliches and is managed for consensus

The old ingredients of Direct Response, Personality and a USP are no longer relevant. A brand would hire an ex Unilver marketeer, he'd brief the agency to create a brand campaign to be based around the concept of a USP, The agency would hire a celebrity to provide the personality for the brand, the brand would then have an image, this would be built on through repetition, cliches and consensus.

TV could provide the impact, interest and a mass audience.

Brands should follow a consitent strategy, not necersarily a consistent execution. After all only liars are consistent.

Brands can be different things to different people. Like the parable of 10 blind people describing an elephant.
To the media company a brand is…
To the ad agency a brand is…
To a desing agency a brand is…

One word equity is like describing an elephant as 'grey'. One word can work for copywriting but not for brands.

Media neutral planning is retrograde: It's not specific, It takes you away from what you are actually trying to achieve.

The famous Ikea brandbook:
This is not a brandbook
If you say the name of a brand people will have richer thoughts than 'passionate', 'intelligent', etc
The strongest brands have a very low self consciousness about other people's impressions of them
Brand is just a means to an end
Muji for example is just a pricing strategy as is Ikea.

The most important meeting for an agency is the pre-prod. This is where the idea actually comes to life and everyone starts to understand what they will eventually create.