Brand Talk | Center on Global Brand Leadership
Brand Talk: insights on how to build strong brands
December 3, 2009
In This Issue:
Strategies for Nonprofit Branding (read)
Rogers Blogs to Preserve the Word (read)
Hosting the NY Video 2009 Top Startup Competition (read)
The Rise of Switzerland's Oldest Bank (read)
More Reading (read)
For Your Amusement (read)
Strategies for Nonprofit Branding

Hayes RothHayes Roth, Chief Marketing Officer of Landor, sat down in our offices to discuss an issue that is dear to him--helping nonprofits become powerful brands.

Hayes states in the video interview that the core branding needs for nonprofits are no different that the needs of for-profit organizations:

  • Understanding your audience
  • Understanding your point of difference
  • Finding a message that is true to your organization
  • Making sure that message is infused throughout the organization
  • Building a promise around that message and supporting it over time

But, Hayes notes that nonprofits are often challenged by a lack of funds to promote the brand, and some aren't comfortable adopting what they may view as a more corporate planning mentality. And possibly the biggest challenge is the diffuse leadership roles within nonprofit organizations. As Hayes put it,

Good branding is a collaborative process, but not a democratic one. In a great organization where you see great brands, you have strong leaders [and]… the decisions finally rest on the CEO.

For those nonprofits that are willing to invest time and money into brand building and are not afraid to commit to organizational changes when necessary, there can be great rewards. Hayes gives examples of strong nonprofit brands like the United Negro College Fund, United Way and the Red Cross that have built strong reputations and awareness and thus have a much greater chance for success when they offer partnership opportunities or ask for assistance.

The full video of his interview is available here. And you may also be interested in a white paper from Hayes on "Nonprofits in jeopardy: Can better branding help?"

Rogers Blogs to Preserve the Word

David RogersOur Executive Director, David Rogers has just launched a new blog. Just what inspired you to do this, David? "Well, now that Schmitt has given up on text, I felt that I should do my part to carry on the tradition."

David will be wiriting regularly on marketing, new media, and customer networks -- as well as posting links to some of his favorite articles, research, and case studies.

Some recent posts on his blog include:

Wishing you much success with the blog! (Especially since we like to pilfer that content for this Newsletter.)
Hosting the NY Video 2009 Top Startup Competition
NY VideoThe Center is pleased to be hosting the NY Video 2009 Top Startup Competition on December 17.

Over 100 video startups have demo’d in front of over 3,300 members. Now, it’s time to crown the top dog. NY Video’s Top Startup of 2009 will be selected by open nomination and voting for the Top 5 Finalists, followed by a live demo competition here at Columbia Business School where 300 members will select the winner via live SMS vote.

So visit to sign-up, to vote for your favorite startup, and to register for the event.

When: December 17, 2009 from 6:30-8:30pm
Where: Uris Hall, Room 301, Columbia Business School
Cost: $10, taken at the door, first come first served

The Rise of Switzerland's Oldest Bank
Wegelin & Co.A new case study co-authored by Professor Bernd Schmitt examines how Wegelin & Co., Switzerland's oldest bank, faces difficult expansion decisions as it looks towards the future.

In spite of the ongoing global financial crisis, Wegelin is doing better today than ever before. It has achieved this success by maintaining its core customer traditions while modernizing and innovating through technology investments, educational partnerships, and the creation of an ownership participation system.

Wegelin now must decide whether to try to build on this success by expanding internationally or stick to its tried and true domestic strategy.

A summary article, including a link to request the case study, is here. A video interview with Prof. Schmitt discussing the details of the case is available here.

More Reading
Architectural Branding (Part 1): What Is It? [VIDEO]
(MeetSCHMITT Video)
Major Brands Extend Their Reach by Sponsoring Webisodes
Customers May Soon Issue Their Own RFPs
(Harvard ProjectVRM Blog)
The $5 Footlong: A Study in the Power of Bottom-up Idea Creation
2009 Zeitgeist: The top 10 Google Search Trends
For Your Amusement
Would You Leave Your Grandma With a Robot?
(NPR AllTechConsidered)
Professor Jin Han Points Out the "Worst Dressed" at the MAMA Afterparty
Best Stairs Ever!
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