Branding Only Works on Cattle: The New Way to Get Known (and Drive your Competitors Crazy)

  • Publish Date: 2009-03-16
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Author: Jonathan Salem Baskin
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  • Regular price $51.95

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In late 2008, a book about the crisis in marketing called Branding Only Works on Cattle predicted:

  • Burger King's creepy mascot wouldn't do anything: it has since lost share, got sued for wasting marketing funds, and its top marketer quit.
  • Gap's heavy expenditures on charity couldn't keep its customers buying, and sure enough its sales sank as fast as every other retailer.
  • Harley Davidson's mammoth brand value wouldn't help it sell bikes. It recently announced a 71% drop in profits on severely lagging sales.
The marketing world is still struggling to come up with a response to the massive change underlying these events, embracing ever-wackier books and nonsense theories (like mind-reading and social media conversations that don't say anything), and as a result:
  • Corporate reputations have plummeted.
  • Consumer loyalty is a thing of the past.
  • Brands are increasingly unable to charge premium prices.
Branding Only Works on Cattle gives detailed proposals on how we might reinvent brands...rethinking them as sets of behaviors, not mental states. It offers a variety of detailed ways to do it, such as:
  • Basing marketing on operational differences, not imagination and perceptions.
  • Embracing true evangelists, not paid celebrities.
  • Mapping campaigns the way video games are designed.
Many marketers shuddered at the possibilities that their cherished fantasies about brands might be wrong; some of them felt compelled to ding the book in their reviews. But Branding Only Works on Cattle remains ahead of its time, and offers a new way of looking at the challenges most businesses are still facing today.