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Best in Brand & Innovation for December

Photo by Rik van der Kroon on Unsplash

Every month we bring you the best articles we find in brand, innovation, and creativity.

This month’s list offers, among other things, how Visa is implying “sensory branding,” what the reverse branding trend is and why it is effective with Millennials, and how taking regular breaks can increase creativity.

See, Hear, Feel: Visa Rolls Out ‘Sensory Branding’  – Finextra.com

Finding ways to engage customers through all five senses can help to create emotional associations. In recent surveys by Visa, a majority of people say that the Visa logo ensures them that a website is secure. Now Visa is finding new ways to evoke the same emotions in the digital and physical world. That answer lies in sensory brandingsince 83 percent of those surveyed say that sound or animation cues positively impact their perception of Visa’s brand and 81 percent say the cues evoke a more positive view of the brand. In response, Visa has developed short sound, animation and haptic (vibration) cues for the Visa Developer Platform.

Advice to Brands: Try to Disappear Completely – thedrum.com

Brands may benefit from engaging less on an emotional level in lieu of placing an emphasis on function. Thriving companies like Under Armour, which is focusing on connected fitness along with Kodak, which is reconnecting the art of photographing and printing, are completely mobile-focused, leaving behind branding and emotional attachments. “These types of seamless service delivery, replacing traditional brand attachment, could inform the next phase of branding evolution, as more new and traditional brands learn how to disappear completely.” writes Tim Dunn.
Tim Dunn @timmcdunn

Millennials And The ‘Reverse Branding’ Trend – Forbes

“Millennials are more likely to buy items associated with a particular cause.” writes Josh Ong. Despite popular belief, millennials are the most brand loyal generation. With these two facts in mind, brands should strive to be perceived as ethical in order to survive. And however important branding is, a delicate balance must take place because millennials have also been “gravitating away from established corporate brands and toward newer companies with less name recognition.” says Ong. “It’s become less about the logo and more about the product itself.”
Josh Ong @beijingdou

Woo your customer like a lover, not a one-night stand – Brand New Media

The new way of marketing involves engaging customers on a personal and intimate level. “In today’s consumer environment in order to seduce brand loyalty, or even a simple transaction, brands need to become their customers’ best friends forever.” writes Damien Bray. The trick is for marketers to become psychologists and empaths. “The one size fits all creative solution is now a tired game.” says Bray. And the way to implement this: get to know your audience in and out.
Damien Bray

When Brands Tempt Us to Lie, Cheat and Steal– phys.org

According to a study in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, businesses with a reputation for cheating their customers and industries with harmful ratings (such as the pharmaceutical industry) perpetuate a desire for citizens to lie, cheat and steal. And these actions produce little to no negative feelings, like guilt. Jeffrey Rotman, a professor in the business school at Deakin University in Australia, says that these actions are justified in the mind of citizens because people feel that the company is doing the same. “My hope is that organizations will make it a priority to build a reputation that allows consumers and businesses to be on the same side.” says Rotman.

The Power of Positive Marketing: Why Your Brand Story Needs More Inspiration – Skyword

Through emotionally engaging videos, researcher Paul J. Zak discovered that “stories with a strong dramatic arc cause an increase in oxytocin—a hormone associated with human bonding—and feelings of empathy.” writes Krystal Overmyer. This means that the more inspirational and hopeful a brand’s message is, the stronger response from the audience. “Through the power of inspirational marketing, brands can grow their audience and encourage interaction.” says Overmyer,  But brands should be watchful since being too positive can come across as inauthentic. Looking at baby animal pictures has such a powerful psychological affect on subjects says Overmyer. “Imagine the impact an empathy-inducing, emotionally inspiring story might have.”
Krystal Overmyer @kaovermyer

Is Technology a Creativity Crusher – Huffington Post

It’s understood that “ high tech skills will be essential to a secure job future”, writes Robin Raskin. However, there’s a growing fear that the future is also inattention and a lack of ability to communicate and focus. But in her article, Raskin suggests that the answer may be to infuse creativity with technology. For example, Microsoft‘s  Skype-a-thon where 500,000 kids connected from all over the world and traveled over 10,000,000 virtual miles in 48 hours. A big part of infusing creativity is learning to master technology instead of letting technology consume you.
Robin Raskin @robinr

How To Unleash Your Creativity, From a Stanford Professor -Forbes

Writer Kevin Kruse interviews creativity coach, Dr. Tina Seelig on her new book, Creativity Rules: Get Ideas Out of Your Head and Into the World. The purpose of her book is to help people “understand that there is a pathway to go from the seed, to an idea, through to implementation.” says Seelig. It’s called: the  “invention cycle”. We go from the “imagination stage” which revolves around engagement and observing a problem that you want to tackle, to the “creativity stage” which leads to the “innovation stage” – reframing the problem, and lastly the “entrepreneurship stage” where others are inspired to get involved. This last stage will perpetuate these steps all over again – hence the word “cycle.”
Kevin Kruse @Kruse

How Breaks Increase Creativity -Campus Rec

Writer Heather Hartmann discusses the concept of implementation vs. great ideas. After reading. Peak Performance: Elevate Your Game, Avoid Burnout and Thrive with the New Science of Success by Brad Stulberg and Steve Magness she and her work team hone in on one fact from a study: those who take as little as a six-minute walk outdoors increase their creativity by more than 60 percent. So she and her team began scheduling in two breaks (along with their lunch break) to refresh their minds, “so once we get back to the grind, creativity can increase” says Hartmann. Along with an increase in creativity, Hartmann also witnessed a stronger connection with her team. “It’s a relaxed time of laughter and joy amidst busy schedules and stressful days.” writes Hartmann.
Heather Hartmann @CampusRecMag


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