Branding literature

I only checked the first page of the forum to see if this has come up, so if it’s a copy cat, I apoligize in advance.

I’m looking for some info on brand analysis and how to do market research leading to brand positioning. Any advice?


Where are you at?

Explotatory? Directional? Concept?
Industry? Segment? Product/Service?

Many methodologies to choose from, but in reality, not too different from design research. Boils down to what the customer values in the brand.

I’m not anywhere yet:) I guess that means exploratory. I don’t have a brand yet, and the sector doesn’t really have any strong brands.

I’ve done user centered design research, but I’d like to know something more directly brand related.

I’d start with interviewing key opinion leaders. Who are the gurus in this sector and what are their passions about it. What makes them pound their fist on the table and say “If we only had this.” or “This is what matters most.”

Branding is the same as design in that you are communicating a value to the customer. Design does it with form, brand does it with words. The approach to find that value is not different between design and brand.

If googling your way through some articles has not gotten you what you want yet, here are a few favourites covering various brand topics:

More academic reads:
• The New Strategic Brand Management, J.N. Kapferer
A lengthy reference book with a bit of everything. Includes a chapter on “Launching The Brand”.
(470 pages of brand development and management!)

• Asian Brand Strategy, M. Roll
Just go straight to the “Asian Brand Strategy” chapter. Straightforward, typical steps of brand building process. Vocabulary and metrics explained clearly. (Nothing “Asian” about it really apart from some shallow “case studies”.) Maybe this is the best place to start if you are at the beginning?
(6 steps to brand development and management!)

• Brand Asset Management, S. Davis
Addresses measurement and brand building from a financial perspective better than most brand books.
(11 steps to brand development and management!)

More fun reads:
• The Brand Gap and Zag, M. Neumeier
The opposite of Kapferer above. Short, simple (simplistic). Preaches to the design choir. Zag provides key questions/process of developing a brand. Maybe this is the best place to start if you are at the beginning?
(17 steps to brand development and management!)

• The Hero And The Outlaw, Mark and Pearson
A psychologist’s or storyteller’s approach to branding/brand positioning.
(12 archetypes for brand development and management!)

tixe: Thanks. I am still looking for resources, so I’ll these right away. Thanks for the résumés of each work too.

Here is a small collection of articles about branding and design on how and why the most powerful brands achieve success and what we can learn from these examples.

This might be a good resource for you… it’s a snapshot of various brand theories. The research part would be deciding on the best theory (or theories) for the challenge, then figuring out the right questions to ask. Some people make custom tools from the theories/challenges, and keep them for future projects

nice book list tix!