Brand Positioning

Sustainable Fashion: Why Patagonia Works Is the Most Beautiful Brand on Earth

This story is about beauty, earth beauty and why engaging in sustainable fashion makes for beautiful brands. But it’s not a romance story, and I’m still the same: we are talking serious brand strategy business!

In 2020, online and multichannel have long become your daily bread and butter, and sustainable fashion is the next big brand strategy topic. (more…)

Let’s Talk About Services

Take service experience one step beyond! This installment of our Let’s Talk About series takes a deep dive into service, the second pillar of building a future-proof brand experience.

We all know what service means, right? We all buy things, and we’re all familiar with the customer experience of being handed our purchase in a carrier bag to take home. That’s an example of a basic consumer expectation. (more…)

How to Drive International Expansion Without Escalating Complexity

Customise or standardise? That’s perhaps the most important question a brand at the beginning of its international expansion has to answer.

Depending on who you ask, you will get very different answers. If you ask your brand and marketing management, they will vote for as much standardisation as possible. If you ask your sales force, the answer will be quite the opposite.

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Freitag: Brand Development Made in Switzerland

In 2019, shoppers love unique products and great brand stories. If on top of that you sell upcycled products and are a niche company from a small country, you have all the ingredients for a memorable brand story.

If someone had told you in 1993 that Freitag would manage to turn truck tarps into it bags in Seoul by 2019, and create a best practice brand development story in the process, you may have questioned their judgement.

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Goats on a Roof! And What’s Your USP?

As far as unique selling propositions go, goats on a roof are pretty unique. And this offline-only retail location on Vancouver Island has turned them into a long-term success story without selling a single goat.

Once upon a time there was a tiny fruit booth near the Trans-Canada Highway that served Vancouverites en route to their weekend and summer houses as well as tourists exploring an island full of natural beauty. That was back in the 70ies when Kristian and Solveig Graaten, who had migrated from Norway 20 years earlier, decided to start a small retail business on Vancouver Island.

In the meantime, this little fruit stall has become the queen of retail locations and one of the most frequented tourist attractions on Vancouver Island: The Coombs Old Country Market.

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The Paul Smith Store in Berlin

Paul Smith has just opened his first Berlin store, and it wouldn’t be Paul Smith (or Berlin) if the store and its location were just ordinary.

Sir Paul Smith is a British designer of extraordinary fashion for men, women, children, and accessories. He has been for some 40 years, and in various collaborations he designs pretty much anything that can be designed. In an interview, he recently described himself as a ‘strange designer’. A few weeks ago, he opened his first small but nonetheless great Paul Smith store in Berlin. (more…)

Offline Retail: Get Out of the Comfort Zone!

An open letter to all offline retailers on how to attract new customers in the face of online competition (if you’re not too tired for a pillow fight).

It’s a sunny afternoon and I’m on a business trip somewhere in Bavaria. As the phone rings, a local German radio station wants a short interview. ‘Tomorrow is the Day of Online Shopping …’, they say. ‘Did you proclaim it?’ I ask.  ‘No, it is a conference in Berlin. We want to report on it and would like to get a statement from you on what e-commerce means for physical retailers and how they can attract new customers’, explains the editor, and we arrange a second call later that day.

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Don’t Trust Your KPI Expectations!

Explore how to keep management and organization committed if your KPIs for international expansion don’t meet the expectations.

This post shows how KPIs in new markets can differ enormously from your home market. When starting international expansion, reporting often needs to be reviewed to make sure that you get the full picture and give a new market its fair chance. This is part 6 of my series on international expansion, catch up with my previous pieces here.

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