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Posts by Chris Weissman

Know Your Allies! The Dangers of Partnership

A colleague of mine recently wrote an article about the benefits of strategic partnerships. I enjoyed the piece, and I don’t disagree with his observations, but it got me thinking about a few counterexamples, none of which are particularly pleasant. Strong partnerships, after all, fail all the time—often in disastrous fashion. Though he made a…

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A Harvard Degree for All?

Business guru Professor Scott Galloway has gotten at least one thing right: higher education is becoming a luxury good. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the administrators of the Harvards and Yales of our nation actually celebrate lower annual acceptance rates: the fewer new students they admit, the more they cheer. With legacy university endowments often being…

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Brand Building in Uncertain Times

Over the past 30 years, I’ve taken note of the different ways consumers respond to market uncertainty. In the savings and loan crisis of the 1980s, for example, shoppers tightened their belts. In 1999, panicked preppers flooded the stores to stockpile goods for (an ultimately illusory) Y2K. And after the great recession 12 years ago,…

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2020 Super Bowl Ads: The Good, the Bad, and the Meh

For advertisers and marketers, the Super Bowl is like, well—it’s like “The Super Bowl” for ad buys. With over 90 million viewers, the big game is a high risk/high reward competition for brands to see who can score the most audience attention in the shortest amount of time. Companies can plop down as much as…

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Whipping Brands Into Shape

I’m a total gym rat. I exercise each and every morning. Some days with intensity, others just to get the blood flowing. And as a relentless fitness freak, I can say there’s nothing I look forward to with more amusement than the month of January. January is when all you New Year’s resolution people show…

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Watch Your F*ing Tone!

We’re coming to the close of marketing planning season for 2020 and, not surprisingly, there have been dozens of articles written about Trends to Watch For in 2020. Google Ads, personalization, interactive content, video, SEO—don’t these takes all look eerily similar to those from 2019 and 2018? Perhaps there are some subtle differences, but it…

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5 Surprising Things Boomers Share with Millennials

Are millennials really so perplexing? Can marketing to them be so different from what came before? This seems to be the message of many articles you find online about how to market to that mysterious youth demographic, a consistent theme of which is that millennials are like no other consumer in history. Marketing to them…

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5 Lessons B2B Marketers Must Learn from the B2C Space

Many say that business-to-business (B2B) marketing and business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing are completely different, even diametrically opposed, the Red Sox v. Yankees of branding. But in truth, they’re relationship is subtler, more like yin and yang. They share much and are even, in many cases, composed of the same stuff. Yet the prevailing wisdom insists that…

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Burger King Gets People Talking—Or Does It?

What a month for Burger King. First, they chose April Fools’ Day, oddly, to launch their new (and not a prank!) Impossible Whopper, a vegan incarnation of their famous sandwich. Then they followed that up a week later with an ad showing people eating a sandwich with chop sticks (the whole thing went horribly wrong…

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Get Ready for Brand Pranks 2019

April Fools’ Day offers companies an opportunity to have some fun while also humanizing themselves a little. For 364 days of the year, they focus on building credibility—but for just one day in the year brands can laugh it all off. This upcoming Monday, we’ll be bringing you a list of the best pranks of…

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The Consequences of Ignoring Brand Story

Years ago, I started my marketing career at Kraft Foods. It was an amazing place to work with great marketing training and world-class marketers to learn from. Though budgets weren’t excessive, there was a serious commitment to investing in brands and an emphasis on building brand equity—what today we refer to as the brand story.…

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3 Ways to Supercharge a TV Ad

The 2019 Super Bowl was not the most exciting event ever aired. Many critics are placing it in the top five most boring games ever played, and others actually rank it as the number one worst of all time. Luckily, the Super Bowl has something else to offer—a storied tradition as a venue where the…

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