Ulli Appelbaum, How to Position Your Brand – InnovaBuzz 552
Ulli Appelbaum – First The Trousers, Then The Shoes
Our guest in this episode is Ulli Appelbaum, founder and Chief Strategy Officer of First The Trousers Then The Shoes, a brand strategy, research, and innovation boutique specialized in brand positioning and messaging, as well as strategy development. Ulli has developed a unique positioning development methodology, that is outlined in his book The Brand Positioning Workbook.
In our conversation Ulli talked to me about
- The definition of a brand as all the associations we have with a specific offering
- Strategy as the first step of defining a brand and our marketing
- Strategic storytelling that engages customers.
Listen to the PodcastA brand is the sum of all the associations we have with a specific product, service or company. @firstthetrouser on #InnovaBuzz podcast Click To Tweet
Show Notes from this episode with Ulli Appelbaum, First The Trousers Then The Shoes
Key points and takeaways from this episode include:
- A brand is the sum of all the associations we have with a specific product, service or company.
- The first step in defining a brand and in marketing is strategy.
- Deep customer focus is understanding what our customers want AND how we can bring this to life for our customers in a way that is unique and fully aligned.
- The Brand Positioning Workbook describes 26 sources of brand association grouped into three categories: frame of reference; engaging the customer; the brand story. It provides a framework for thinking about a brand.
- The key to successful creative problem solving is to explore a wide and deep list of potential solutions.
- The actual problem is often different to the stated problem. Asking good questions, involving all stakeholders and reflective listening will help uncover the real problem.
- Disruptive innovation is best handled by a team that is outside the company hierarchy, with a decision maker with the power to say yes.
- Be congruent in the brand stories you tell – the behavior and the story need to align.
- Regularly challenge the brand associations that you believe customers assign to your business. Are they relevant and unique?
The actual problem is often different to the stated problem. Asking good questions, involving all stakeholders and reflective listening will help uncover the real problem. @firstthetrouser on #InnovaBuzz podcast Click To Tweet
The Buzz – Our Innovation Round
Here are Ulli’s answers to the questions of our innovation round. Listen to the conversation to get the full scoop.
- 1 thing to be more innovative – Get out of your comfort zone – do things you haven’t done before, go to places you haven’t been before, talk to new people.
- Best thing for new ideas – Document your ideas – write a book!
- Favourite tool for innovation – Talking to random people, and listen.
- Keep project/client on track – Clearly define and understand expectations. Consistent communication.
- Differentiate – Be yourself; find your own style.
Do something you haven’t done before – it can be small or even better, travel to a new country, arrange non-resort accommodation, rent a car and explore.
You can reach out and thank Ulli through LinkedIn, or his website.
- “The Brand Positioning Workbook” – Ulli Appelbaum
Cool Things About Ulli
- Ulli has created the family game the “26 Popular Children Games from Around The World”, a set of cards created to help promote cultural understanding and tolerance among children through play.
- He is a blogger for the Huffington Post, a contributor to various trade publications in the US and Europe.
- He is also a member of the Practitioner Council of the American Marketing Association.
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