Food Pantry Rebrand

Food Pantry Rebrand
Every so often, we get the opportunity to work on a passion project. As a longtime board member, co-leading the rebranding efforts for Nourishing Hope (formerly Lakeview Pantry) definitely qualifies. Even prior to the pandemic, Lakeview Pantry, Chicago’s largest food pantry, was outgrowing its name from a geography served and services standpoint....

Backing Off Buzzwords – Case Studies

Backing Off Buzzwords – Case Studies
Every company has internal jargon that has evolved to speed conversations, including those about the benefits of its products and services. At its extreme, this might mean using inscrutable acronyms like those Kraft Foods used to use (anyone out there remember CIS, STOC, DRF). In fact, in the early 90’s, every new brand management employee was...

Reasons to Believe – Not Just Blowing Smoke

Reasons to Believe – Not Just Blowing Smoke
In a positioning statement, the Reasons to Believe (RTB) provide the evidence to support the Point of Difference. They’re what stand between your message being a puff piece and being authentic. However, as with so many other things in marketing, people are often tempted to throw the kitchen sink into their RTB’s rather than remaining strategic...

Evolving Value Propositions

Evolving Value Propositions
When you position your product or company, the value proposition is typically grounded in brand fundamentals that are expected to remain core to the business across multiple years. So how and when do you adjust your positioning for normal evolution and growth? What happens when market conditions change so dramatically that they impact your...

Diving Into Cannabis Beverages – Wynk™ Case Study

Diving Into Cannabis Beverages – Wynk™ Case Study
Background: Two successful serial entrepreneurs wanted to enter the cannabis space with the category’s first nationally branded THC beverage. They had developed a ground-breaking mobile, co-manufacturing plant to work around the category’s state-by-state legal complexities, but they had no experience building a CPG brand. Although we recommended...

Backing Off Buzzwords – Colliers

Backing Off Buzzwords – Colliers
Colliers is one of the largest industrial real estate firms in the country. Their selective, highly specialized Logistics and Transportation Group wanted messaging that went beyond platitudes and generic buzzwords to more clearly describe why they’re different and special in a meaningful, believable way. In this 5-minute video for their annual...

Look at Your Competitive Set in a New Way

Look at Your Competitive Set in a New Way
A recent Harvard Business Review article, Cultural Innovation, by Douglas Holt, resonated with me on multiple levels. First, it’s about rethinking your category and its underlying unmet needs, Second, it’s all about understanding the entrenched schemas in your category and identifying hidden dissatisfiers to break them, which is the foundation...

A Fresh Look at How B2B Customers Buy

A Fresh Look at How B2B Customers Buy
The last few years have seen a flurry of new Argentum clients in the distribution space. Distributor differentiation is especially challenging since distributors typically carry the same products at the same prices as their competitors. As a result, these distributors have been some of my most interesting clients to position. One of these...

Throwdown: So You Think YOUR Service is Differentiated?

Throwdown: So You Think YOUR Service is Differentiated?
Whenever we teach Positioning, someone invariably wants their Point of Difference to be “Exceptional service.” Generally, this is way too generic to be genuinely differentiating. But a remanufactured toner cartridge company we worked with a few years ago was the exception to this rule.  Watch this quick video case study. 

It’s Time for a Marketing Audit!

It’s Time for a Marketing Audit!
When was the last time you did a marketing audit? If it’s been over a year (if ever) then now is a great time to tackle this important piece of marketing hygiene. This is especially true if the current world situation has slowed your company’s usually hectic marketing pace. Conducting a marketing audit helps you take a good, hard, objective look...