Accidental Branding - How Ordinary People Build Extraordinary Brands

Overview

This book discusses the phenomenal success of some very realpeople. They built some of the biggest and best-known consumerbrands in the world—and they did it without any experience inmarketing or branding. How did they achieve such profound successin such a super-competitive environment in which most newbusinesses fail? Accidental Branding explores this question bytelling the personal stories of eight remarkable entrepreneurs.

Accidental brands are those brands that don't come ...

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Overview

This book discusses the phenomenal success of some very realpeople. They built some of the biggest and best-known consumerbrands in the world—and they did it without any experience inmarketing or branding. How did they achieve such profound successin such a super-competitive environment in which most newbusinesses fail? Accidental Branding explores this question bytelling the personal stories of eight remarkable entrepreneurs.

Accidental brands are those brands that don't come fromcorporate headquarters but instead from ordinary, hardworkingpeople with good ideas and a willingness to trust their instinctsover the established rules of brand building. In AccidentalBranding, marketing expert David Vinjamuri reveals how each ofthese entrepreneurs broke some of the same conventions ofmarketing—and became stronger for it. They beat establishedbrands by doing things differently and doing them with passion.

With Vinjamuri as your guide, you'll meet John Peterman of thelegendary J. Peterman catalog; Craig Newmark, founder of the onlineclassified site craigslist.org; Gary Erickson, inventor of the ClifBar; Myriam Zaoui and Eric Malka, founders of The Art of Shavingstores; "Mother" Gert Boyle of Columbia Sportswear; JulieAigner-Clark, founder of Baby Einstein; and Roxanne Quimby ofBurt's Bees.

Accidental Branding reveals the new rules of renegade brandbuilding that all eight of these inspiring entrepreneursinstinctively followed. They didn't go to business school to learnhow to succeed. They didn't bother with consumer testing; they werethe consumers—just like the rest of us. Read their stories anddiscover what it takes to grow a business and turn a brand into ahousehold name.

It's not always the marketing experts and corporate MBAs whobuild world-changing businesses. Sometimes it's people like Craig,Julie, Roxanne—or even you. If you're a small business owner,a future entrepreneur, or even a corporate marketer looking tobuild a more authentic brand, Accidental Branding offers an insidelook at some of the world's best and least likely brandleaders.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
The stories of acclaimed entrepreneurs like John Peterman (J. Peterman) and Gert Boyle (Columbia Sportswear), whose brands generate a cult-like loyalty from consumers, give this book a lively flavor that goes down better than any list of dry strategies. Author Vinjamuri—a marketing professor at New York University and the founder of a marketing training company—reports that “every brand I wanted to write about started with some fortuitous accident” visited upon perfectionists who “sweat every detail.” Gary Erickson, creator of the Clif Bar, is one such perfectionist; a long-distance cyclist disgusted with foul-tasting energy bars, he invented his own bar, more delicious and nutritious than any of its competitors. Another example is Roxanne Quimby, who was living in a tent in Maine with her five-year-old twin daughters when Burt Shavitz, a beekeeper, picked her up hitchhiking and inspired her Burt's Bees brand. Luck and good timing played a role for these businesspeople, but their success ultimately stemmed from an “ability to think like their own consumer.” Despite a tendency to digress, Vinjamuri has a similar understanding of his readers. The chapter he dedicates to his own conclusions is thoughtful enough, but not nearly as compelling as the stories of the entrepreneurs themselves. (Apr.) (Publishers Weekly, February 8, 2008)
Publishers Weekly

The stories of acclaimed entrepreneurs like John Peterman (J. Peterman) and Gert Boyle (Columbia Sportswear), whose brands generate a cult-like loyalty from consumers, give this book a lively flavor that goes down better than any list of dry strategies. Author Vinjamuri-a marketing professor at New York University and the founder of a marketing training company-reports that "every brand I wanted to write about started with some fortuitous accident" visited upon perfectionists who "sweat every detail." Gary Erickson, creator of the Clif Bar, is one such perfectionist; a long-distance cyclist disgusted with foul-tasting energy bars, he invented his own bar, more delicious and nutritious than any of its competitors. Another example is Roxanne Quimby, who was living in a tent in Maine with her five-year-old twin daughters when Burt Shavitz, a beekeeper, picked her up hitchhiking and inspired her Burt's Bees brand. Luck and good timing played a role for these businesspeople, but their success ultimately stemmed from an "ability to think like their own consumer." Despite a tendency to digress, Vinjamuri has a similar understanding of his readers. The chapter he dedicates to his own conclusions is thoughtful enough, but not nearly as compelling as the stories of the entrepreneurs themselves. (Apr.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470165065
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 3/21/2008
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

David Vinjamuri teaches marketing at New York University andis founder and President of ThirdWay Brand Trainers, a marketingtraining company whose clients include American Express, StarwoodHotels & Resorts, and other leading consumer brands. David is aformer brand manager at Johnson & Johnson and Coca-Cola.
For more information, visit www.accidentalbranding.com.

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Table of Contents

Foreword.

Chapter I. What is an Accidental Brand.

Chapter II. The Accidental Brand-Builder in You.

Chapter III. The Storyteller John Peterman (J. Peterman).

Chapter IV. Craig Newmark (Craigslist).

Chapter V. Gary Erickson (Clif Bar).

Chapter VI. Myrian Zaoui and Eric Malka (The Art ofShaving).

Chapter VII. Gert Boyle (Columbia Sportswear).

Chapter VIII. Julie Aigner-Clark (Baby Einstein).

Chapter IX. Roxanne Quimby (Burt's Bees).

Afterword.

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