Byron Sharp – how brands grow

Byron Sharp answers questions about his best selling book ‘How brands grow’. Originally written to convince CEO’s it has been widely adopted by the marketing community to transform how they do business.

Short and Sweet

  • It’s a myth that WOM is astoundingly impactful. Whilst people will say that they trust brand recommendations by friends, they will most likely talk about brands they already use. Advertising is still the most effective way to tell people new things about brands they didn’t know before.
  • All that matters is that you build up mental availability. Not only within your current buyers but also all buyers in the category. Once people can recall your brand top of mind, they will look for you when relevant. Most of the sales you do this year comes from the work that’s been done in the past 20 years not this year.
  • There are categories with longer purchase cycles, like cars, insurances, cameras, that people aren’t really interested in for a long time. Then there are 3 weeks periods that they are interested intensely. Search is usually highly constrained. They will search for what they remember. Here you’ve got two tasks: get people who are not interested in your category yet and plant the seed. And when they go into search mode, they’ll look for you. This is highly impactful. Secondly, you need to have the things in place to catch the people who are in that search mode.
  • If you find a cheap way to reach your category buyers brains and spread your advertising continuously you’ll win. But you don’t want to overdo it and annoy them.
  • The internet is a mature media now. The penetration isn’t increasing anymore. Its advertising. Like it always was. We need to understand the fundamentals of how to catch more attention.

Some Statements we liked

“Media has changed. How brands grow and how buyers buy hasn’t changed.”

“Most people spend most of their lives in the real world.”

“Facebook now reaches a lot of people. But is now an old fashioned advertising device”

More about Byron Sharp

Have a look at his Ted Speech and follow him on Twitter via @ProfByron to get his news. Coming up next: ‘How brands grow in emerging markets’.

The Planning Salon is running a Digital Strategy Bootcamp in NYC in August, for more information check out the page for more information.  

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