Emotional concepts need cultural context

Sep 01 2017 Published by neilgains under emotion

TapestryWorks have long used visual stimuli to capture the motivations and emotions associated with customer jobs, categories, brands and executions, and in a recent self-funded study we looked at the role of context, and specifically cultural context, in shaping the feelings of women about beauty. Read more »

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Cultural Insights Help Marketers Connect Universal Truths to Local Truths

Aug 21 2017 Published by neilgains under brand essense

Little by little the past few years have seen a weakening of the dominance of multinational brands in Asia, as local players win consumer’s hearts with greater understanding of local culture and its importance in consumer decision-making.

For example, beauty is big business in Asia, but in many countries local brands are the most popular with the highest penetration and market share, with international brands increasingly struggling to compete. In Indonesia, local brand Wardah has come from nowhere to take around one-third of the cosmetics market. It’s secret? Understanding the values of Indonesian women (and halal certification, something that has now been legislated to come into effect in the coming years). Read more »

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From Morning Lift To Nighttime Gift: Jakarta beauty routines

Jun 30 2017 Published by neilgains under brand essense

Two years ago, TapestryWorks collaborated with ABN Impact Indonesia to explore beauty goals among Indonesian women, and exactly two years’ later we went back to their Jakarta Beauty insight community to learn more.

In our earlier study, we learnt about a range of motivations that are important to Jakarta women and the beauty that they desire, including Confidence, Knowledge, Care, Belonging, Love, Fun and the desire to be (a little) Unique. In our latest study, we decided to look more deeply into these different motivations to understand how they relate to different aspects of women’s daily lives. Read more »

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Understanding Muslim Beauty: The endless growing opportunity

Apr 25 2017 Published by neilgains under Asia trends

What is the real opportunity for Muslim beauty? Let’s start with the numbers, which are truly impressive, before sharing  some research on what Muslim women want from beauty and the relationship between beauty and Muslim values. Let’s then look at one beauty brand that I think has been successful in capturing these needs and values, before putting Muslim beauty into a broader context of global beauty trends. Read more »

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5 Ways Brand Stories Connect

Mar 31 2017 Published by neilgains under storytelling

We all understand the impact of stories in our lives, and increasingly businesses are taking storytelling more seriously as a skill to develop and nurture (I’ve recently run a Storytelling training program for one such business in China and have another public course running in May). But what is it about story that connects so powerfully with us, and how does the psychology of story mirror the psychology of brand choice? Here are five ways that stories tap into universal human behaviours.

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The esSense of a new insurance brand? (The Importance of Brand esSense #6)

Feb 14 2017 Published by neilgains under brand essense

Walking through Singapore yesterday, I noticed for the first time the eTiQa insurance brand, owned by Maybank. Perhaps I should have noticed the brand before, but I was struck by the colours and naming of the brand which struck an immediate resonance for the category.

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Marketing to Consumers’ Instincts

Dec 14 2016 Published by neilgains under book review

There are now many books about the application of behavioural science to branding and marketing (including Brand esSense). The Business Of Choice by Matthew Willcox is a recent edition is one of the more readable ones, summarising many of the core ideas of behavioural economics in a very business-focused and reader-friendly way. Uniquely, the coverage extends to thinking about the role of human nature and culture in shaping consumers’ decision-making.

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The Beauty of Believing in Brand Values

Nov 28 2016 Published by neilgains under brand essense

Reading Generation M recently (review here) made me think long and hard about the relationship between religious or spiritual beliefs and brand values. TapestryWorks’ research on Asian beauty has highlighted the gap between international brands and the aspirations of many Asian women. This gap is nowhere clearer than Indonesia, where many local brands “feel” much more in tune with local culture, a culture which is very strongly informed by Muslim values. Read more »

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A Gap in the Toblerone Brand (The Importance of Brand esSense #5)

Nov 10 2016 Published by neilgains under brand essense

Why, oh why, oh why? Why would any brand manager take the most unique, distinctive and well known asset of a brand and change it?

Well Mondelez know better and have widened the spaces between the well known chunks of a Toblerone chocolate bar in order to save money (perhaps inspired by Brexit and rising ingredient costs). You can see the original and “gappy” versions of the product above.

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The esSense of Brand Extensions

Apr 15 2016 Published by neilgains under brand essense

What should marketers know about brand extensions, and the role of their brand meaning in shaping their decisions about how far they can stretch their brand? We all know about the many failures of brand extensions, so how do you avoid them?

The key is always to understand the esSense of your brand and what it means to customers. Successful brand extensions are able to leverage a brand’s esSense, while many unsuccessful brand extensions simply don’t fit with what the consumer already knows about your brand. Read more »

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