David A. Aaker: An interview by Bob Morris

First Friday Book Synopsis

In his own words: “My passion is understanding brands and helping firms build brands and brand portfolios. My first brand book, Managing Brand Equity defined brand equity and set forth its value to a firm and its customers. The second, Building Strong Brands, described the “brand identity&# model that many firms use to manage their brands and also introduced the Brand Equity Ten [.].

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Make Your Competition Irrelevant

First Friday Book Synopsis

Here is an excerpt from an article written by David Aaker for “The Conversation&# series featured by the Harvard Business Review blog. To read the complete article, check out the wealth of free resources, and sign up for a subscription to HBR email alerts, please click here. * * * When a brand sallies forth [.].

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Forget Brand Preference – Win the Brand Relevance War

Strategy Driven

Brand Relevance : Making Competitors Irrelevant by David Aaker. Not only are these brands phenomenally successful – they are examples of product categories where competitors are nearly irrelevant, says branding guru David Aaker. In his groundbreaking new book, Brand Relevance : Making Competitors Irrelevant, David shows how any company can use the “brand relevance” strategy to achieve long-term, competitive success.

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Make Your Competition Irrelevant

Harvard Business Review

Marketing strategies geared toward this approach feature constant, incremental enhancements to the offering's attractiveness, reliability, or price, in hopes of getting buyers to take a second look at a familiar brand. The problem is that incremental innovation and investments in marketing rarely change the market share structure. As a result, a brand preference strategy is usually a recipe for playing catch-up, giving up margin, and, ultimately, succumbing to irrelevance.

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Twelve Ways to Create Barriers to Competitors

Harvard Business Review

The only real way to grow sales and profits is to create innovative offerings with some "must haves" that define new categories or subcategories for which competitors are not relevant. Ongoing innovation. Chrysler went for 18 years without a serious competitor in the minivan category it created in part with innovations like sliding driver side doors, swivel seats and removable back seats. It really is a different way to look at strategy.

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How CMOs Build Brands by Collaborating Across Silos

Harvard Business Review

All these roles can lead to a seat at the strategy table, an invited seat rather than one forced on the silo executive teams, and to opportunities to link silos both strategically and tactically. Too often silos are constrained and fail to create brilliant offering or marketing innovations. Both are the basis for communication and both are nonthreatening in that they do not impose the same strategy on all.

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