During my 5 years back in Canada, I have been faithful to one beer brand – King Pilsener. King was a microbrewery in Nobleton (next to King City, north of Toronto) that had a very simple idea: Buy the best equipment and ingredients from the Czech Republic, and make a pilsener as good as or better than Czechvar, Pilsner […]

born in 1649, Fiskars Ruukki, Finland. On my frequent business trips to Helsinki, visits to the Stockmann department store would spruce up the occasional boring evening. I remember regularly browsing the hardware department, noticing some very impressive orange and black coloured tools, but always hesitating to purchase. They weren’t too expensive, just beautiful and sturdy […]

Until last year, I didn’t know about High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). Like anything in life, you only notice some things when you try them. I never noticed how bad American Coca Cola tasted until I spent 3 months in Costa Rica getting used to original-recipe Coca Cola. Original recipe means the sweetener is real […]

Thanks to Paul, the webmaster of the immensely popular activist site www.love6music.com for placing my article about BBC 6 Music on the front page last week. It provided quite a few hits for my humble brand-blog. My post tried to explain what was going on through former P&G / Pepsi Marketer Tim Davie’s brand brain, explained […]

…. every Canadian athlete had a chocolate bar in their kit bag that said “believe”. It’s true. I tried one today, it tasted like truth serum. Nutty, nougaty, chocolate coated truth serum. The problem is, it only works with Snickers bars and Canadians. Mars UK tried marketing “Believe” branded Mars bars in England during World […]

When discussing my Costa Rica move with people last summer, I would explain my objectives as (1) write a book (2) do a blog (3) learn to surf. The book’s coming along slowly, I enjoy putting together the blog, but the surfing took a backseat until a couple of weeks ago. To “ease” my way […]

I just typed in “Volvo” on this Vintage Ad Browser, and it came back with lots of Volvo print ads from the old days. Very useful for presentations, but also to see illustrations of how positioning and identities of different brands have changed (or for some, remained remarkably consistent).

A very early memory for me involved a trip with my father to McDonalds on Montreal Road in Ottawa.  I was quite a daring 4 year old, devouring those delicious little burgers without much concern about the onions and mustard and pickles. The real reason I liked that McDonalds was it was near my dad’s […]

Is that really Alyson Hannigan?  I don’t get it. What I do get is ingredient branding.  In the book Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind, Jack Trout and Al Ries espoused the idea that a brand can only mean one thing, or be good at one thing.   Coke is the best cola, but it […]