Posted by Giles Lury on April 9, 2010
Simon’s post on Logorama and Alan’s on Nike reminded me of a wonderful little book by the Australian author Max Berry (which was titled “Logoland” in Italy and Germany but was titled “Jennifer Government” in many other countries) and is a brand cynic’s dream.
It is set in an alternative future where the government has less power but brands significantly more. In fact everyone is now known by the brand they work for hence the main characters are Hack Nike, John Nike and Jennifer Government.
The story revolves around Hack who is a low level but ambitious employee of Nike. To try and gain promotion he allows himself to be contracted by one of his higher ups, John Nike, who has the glamorous job of Vice President of Guerrilla Marketing, for an ambitious but highly dubious marketing campaign. John and his team are planning to release the new Nike Mercury trainers – which will sell for thousands of dollars but cost pennies to manufacture - and in order to try and drum up the necessary desire for the shoes, John Nike plans to increase “street cred” in the worst way possible: by having Hack kill people who try to buy them.
Hack, bound by his contract and desire for promotion but unable to contemplate murder on his own, subcontracts to the Police, now a mercenary organization, beginning a chain of business transactions which could land Nike in hot water should word of the plot leak.
After several children are murdered at various Nike chains on opening day, agent Jennifer Government takes it upon herself to track down the perpetrators, even if she can’t get the funding for it…
Posted by Dave Lawrence on January 25, 2010
Continuing our series of favourite kids brands it was fascinating to juxtaposition the brand & media inspirations for the different generations of kids. Literary classic Roald Dahl was the choice of Joss Clayton and as both a book and movie franchise, these fantastic stories continue to captivate audiences today as witnessed with the recent ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’. However it is clear that today’s children are equally enthralled by the interactive world demonstrated by Anna Eggleton’s choice of Club Penguin. This website has a huge following and provides kids with a uniquely engaging means to stimulate their imaginations and socialize with their online peers.
“Roald Dahl is my official favourite kids brand – I love the books and as a brand I would say it perfectly communicates the way in which children are naturally drawn to the gross, weird and cheeky bits of life. The fact that they have a dual appeal to both kids and adults is of course a plus from a sales / endurance point of view but for me these were the books that it were ok to laugh with, be revolted by and quote. They are 100% un-naff and champion the child, not the parent.” Joss Clayton, Marketing Analyst
“Club Penguin is an MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game) involving a virtual world containing a range of online games and activities. Using cartoon penguins as avatars, players waddle around, chat, play minigames and participate in other activities with one another in a snow-covered virtual world. Where else can your children learn how to use a PC, earn money, look after pets, buy and sell items of clothing? They can even undertake missions to become secret agents. For the children a great mix of constantly changing fun and interaction (you play and meet other people online). For parents it represents a safe place for your children to pick up those all important computer skills (as well as the bonus of some peace and quiet!).” Anna Eggleton, Director of Closeness
Posted by Giles Lury on November 2, 2009
With Dan Brown riding high in the bestsellers list again, I was reminded of a great book I read a while ago – The Marketing Code by Stephen Brown. I would recommend it to any marketer for light bedtime or holiday reading, as it has all of the pace of the Dan Brown book but much more wit.
As the blurb on the back says:
“Death stalks the streets of Edinburgh as marketing lecturer Simon Magill receives a gruesome message about a mysterious website. He is plunged into a marketing maelstrom that sweeps from the glitz of Las Vegas to the grime of West Belfast, taking in the Freemasons, the Knights Templar, the conspiracies surrounding the sinking of the Titanic and, not least, the insidious marketing campaign behind Dan Brown’s blockbuster novel, The Da Vinci Code”.
Posted by Giles Lury on May 20, 2009
Robert Sjoborg, Director of the Brand Academy at Orkla is a long term client and friend of The Value Engineers. He has collaborated with Mats Persson, another friend and occasional associate of ours (and MD of The Core Company), to write a new book entitled “Archetypes & Brands”. This has recently been published in Sweden, and now an English translation is available too.
It’s a good summary of the case for using archetypes in defining and developing brand personalities. One of its real strengths however is that so many of the case histories are based on Nordic brands which makes it a really fresh and interesting read.
The book has the ISBN number of 978-91-633-0725-6. Unfortuantely it’s not available for sale through bookshops in the UK or on-line but copies may be bought directly from The Core Company. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org