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Straight Talk with Nigel Hollis

Nigel Hollis Executive Vice President and Chief Global Analyst, Millward Brown

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Monday, April 27, 2015

No premium for financial services? Commonwealth Bank can

Several people have asked me whether the concept of “brand premium” was relevant to financial services. For instance, one person questioned whether brand premium was relevant to banks since there was little differentiation between the brands in their country. I think it is relevant, but we have to look beyond ‘price’ to identify the financial benefits of being premium in a service sector.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Social media proves that people do not care about brands

If the idea that social media proves that people do not care about brands feels wrong to you, consider this. I could have substituted the words “neuroscience” or even “survey research” for social media. Whether we like it or not, normal people care far less about brands than do the people charged with managing them.

Monday, April 20, 2015

One sign that your brand could die

The recent Bankruptcy of RadioShack in the USA reminded me that I needed to update my dead and bankrupt brands analysis to reflect our new Meaningful, Different and Salient metrics. Since I last looked at the analysis a couple of names have been added to the list, most notably Nokia mobile phones.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Chanel aims to bring prices into line around the world

If I had not been working on a presentation about building brand loyalty for luxury brands, I may have missed this news; Chanel has lowered its prices in China while raising them in Europe. This change has huge profit implications, but may prove a worthwhile investment if it shuts down the grey market in resale and fake goods.

Monday, April 13, 2015

RadioShack joins Circuit City while Best Buy hangs on

After 94 years, RadioShack finally joined Circuit City and filed for bankruptcy last week. The company that rose to fame on the back of the radio revolution finally succumbed to the rise of mobile phones and online shopping. But as the new owners of RadioShack do their “best to make lemonade from lemons”, Best Buy finally serves up some sweeter results, in part due to mobile phones.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Amazon’s Dash is going to be big for brands

The Internet of Things just came one step closer thanks to Amazon. The news that Amazon was testing a replenishment service called Dash last week was thought to be an April Fool’s joke by some, but Dash is no joke. For many brands Dash presents a way to lock in purchasers who might otherwise feel free to shop around.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Your brand’s growth today was decided long ago

It is a depressing idea isn’t it? But unfortunately, for most brands, how well a brand grows market share this year was decided in the past. Not just last year, but even longer ago. But then this finding should only come as a surprise if you have forgotten that what your brand stands for is important. Meaningful differentiation is the foundation on which strong, growing brands are built.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Have I got a cat video for you!

Cats - described by Ben Huh of the Cheezburger Network as “weapons of mass cuteness” – are big on the Internet. Funny cats, grumpy cats, or ugly cats all get their five seconds of fame online. Now they seem to be taking over Facebook; cat posts won three to one over dogs in my Newsfeed this morning. However, it seems that these weapons of mass cuteness can be just as impactful offline as on.