“Graham Robertson hits all the right notes in his new marketing book, Beloved Brands, a book every CMO or would-be CMO should read.”
Choose the brand playbooks that will make you a smarter marketer
If you are looking for help in running your brand, explore Beloved Brands or B2B Brands playbooks. We will challenge you with strategic thinking, brand positioning, brand plans, marketing execution, and analytics.
If you are looking to manage your marketing career, choose our Brand Career playbook. We will challenge you with the necessary marketing skills, leadership behaviors and on-the-job experiences to help you realize your full potential.
Our latest playbook for 2021
Brand Career is the playbook for the ambitious marketer
I wrote the Brand Career playbook to help my fellow brand management professionals reach the full potential of their marketing career.
In our first two books, Beloved Brands and B2B Brands playbooks, we focused on the brand. This new book, Brand Career, is about you. I will lay out the marketing skills, leadership behaviors, and on-the-job experiences you need to find your success. We borrow some of our tools from the other playbooks as a foundation, and then we will show you how to use these tools to become part of your skillset to use throughout your career.
We will start by getting you to assess what you naturally bring to your marketing career, whether your core strength is running the business, marketing execution, strategic planning, or people leadership. If you have an obvious strength, build your career around it instead of trying to be something you are not. Then we will get you to understand how you think and how you decide that sets up four types of brand leaders: strategic thinkers, instinctual thinkers, taskmasters, and consensus socializers.
We build our Brand Career playbook around the marketing skills, leadership behaviors, and on-the-job experiences that you need to collect throughout your marketing career. While many will show up naturally in your career, you will end up with specific gaps due to specific jobs you have along your journey. It is akin to collecting these skills based on the opportunities in front of us.
The skills we focus on include strategic thinking, brand positioning, brand plans, marketing execution, and marketing analytics.
From there, we will lay out a game plan of what it takes to move up from an entry-level role up to the VP/CMO level. To help you in your career, we will show you how to build and use your personal brand.
The purpose of our Brand Career playbook is not to provide you with my answer. I will put forward many different thinking tools with questions to help you find your answers and build your pathway to success.
You can find Brand Career on Amazon, Apple Books or Rakuten Kobo.
Take a look at a sample of our Brand Career playbook
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Beloved Brands is the playbook to keep at your fingertips
Our readers tell us they reach for Beloved Brands a few times each week as a reference toolkit to help them with the day-to-day management of their brand.
- We will challenge you with questions that get you to think differently about your brand strategy.
- Our process for defining your brand positioning will open your mind to new possibilities for how you see your brand.
- We will show you how to write a brand plan that everyone can follow. Make sure all stakeholders know precisely how they can contribute to your brand’s success.
- We will show you how to run the creative execution process, show you how to write an inspiring brief, and make decisions to find both smart and breakthrough work.
- You will learn new methods to analyze the performance of your brand with a deep-dive business review.
Over 90% of our Amazon reviews receive five-star ratings, and Beloved Brands has spent numerous weeks as a #1 bestseller in brand management.
Take a look at a sample of our Beloved Brands playbook
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B2B Brands is the playbook to keep close by
Our readers tell us they reach for B2B Brands a few times each week as a reference toolkit to help them with the day-to-day management of their brand.
With B2B Brands, we want to challenge you with questions that get you to think differently about your brand strategy. Our process for defining your brand positioning will open your mind to new possibilities for how you see your brand.
We will show you how to write a brand plan that everyone can follow so they know precisely how they can contribute to your brand’s success.
We will show you how to run the creative execution process, show you how to write an inspiring brief, and make decisions to find both smart and breakthrough communications.
You will learn new methods to analyze the performance of your brand with a deep-dive business review.
Our B2B Brands playbook offers a variety of B2B case studies and examples to help the B2B marketing professional learn new methods.
Take a look at a sample of our B2B Brands playbook
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Our playbooks will teach you how to think, define, plan, execute and analyze
1. How to think strategically
Too many marketers are so busy that they do not even have time to think.
The best brand leaders do the necessary critical strategic thinking to find ways to win in the market. Strategic thinking is an essential foundation, forcing marketers to ask big questions that challenge and focus brand decisions. Our brand management books provide you with the tools you need to think differently.
I will show you four ways to enhance your strategic thinking, using the brand’s core strength finder, consumer strategy, competitive strategy, and situational strategy. You will learn how to set a vision for your brand, focus your limited resources on breakthrough points, take advantage of opportunities you see in the market, find early wins to leverage to give your brand a positional power to drive growth and profits for your brand.
In our section on strategic thinking, you will learn how to:
- Use five elements help smart strategic thinking
- Leverage our 360-degree strategic thinking model
- Build everything around your brand’s core strength
- Use strategically to tighten your brand’s bond with consumers
- Think strategically to win the competitive battles you face
- Understand the brand’s current situation
- Write strategic objective statements for each of the four strategy
2. How to define your brand positioning
Too many marketers are trying to be everything to anyone. This strategy is the usual recipe for becoming nothing to everyone.
The best brand leaders target a specific motivated consumer audience and then define their brand around a brand idea that is interesting, simple, unique, motivating and ownable.
In our brand management books, we will show you how to write a winning brand positioning statement with four essential elements: target market, competitive set, main benefit and reason to believe (RTB). You will learn how to build a brand idea that leads every touchpoint of your brand, including the brand promise, brand story, innovation, purchase moment and experience. With this marketing book, I will give you the tools for how to write a winning brand concept and brand story.
In our section on defining your brand, you will learn how to:
- Write brand positioning statements
- Focus your target market, with insights, enemies, and need states
- Define consumer benefits, both functional and emotional
- Come up with brand support points and claims
- Use the relationship between brand soul, brand idea and brand reputation
- Build your brand idea
- Write brand concept statements
- Turn your brand concept into a brand story
- Use the brand positioning and brand idea to build your internal brand credo
3. How to write Brand Plans
Too many marketers focus on a short-term to-do list, not a long-term plan.
The best brand leaders write brand plans everyone in the organization can follow with ease, including senior management, sales, R&D, agencies and operational teams.
I will teach you how to write each element of the brand plan, including the brand vision, purpose, values, goals, key Issues, strategies, and tactics. We use real-life examples to give you a framework to use on your brand. With our brand management books, you will learn to build execution plans including a brand communications plan, innovation plan, and in-store plan.
In our section on how to write brand plans, you will learn how to:
- Use five strategic questions as an outline for your entire plan
- Write an inspirational brand vision statement to frame your brand plan
- Come up with a brand purpose and brand values
- Summarize your brand’s situation analysis
- Map out the key issues your brand faces
- Write smart, brand strategy objective statements to build around your brand’s core strength
- Create smart, consumer brand objective strategy statements
- Write smart, competitive brand objective strategy statements
- Build smart, situational brand strategy objective statements
- Focus tactics to ensure a high return on effort
- Write specific execution plans for brand communications, innovation, and in-store
- Figure out the profit statement, sales forecast, goals, and marketing budget for your plan
- Build ideal one-page brand formats for an annual brand plan and long-range strategic roadmap
4. How to inspire marketing execution
Too many marketers are becoming task-masters and step over the line into execution.
The best brand leaders need to inspire experts to produce smart and creative execution. With our brand management books, I will provide tools and techniques for judging and making decisions on creative advertising from your agency.
For judging execution, I use the ABC’s tool, believing the best executions must drive Attention (A), Brand link (B), Communication (C) and Stickiness (S). I will provide a checklist for you to use when judging executions, then show you how to provide direction to your agency to inspire and challenge great execution.
In our section on how to lead the marketing execution, you will learn how to:
- Use your crucial role as the brand leader to get great creative execution
- Be the brand leader who can successfully manage the 10 stages of the advertising process
- Write a brand communications plan
- Turn the brand communications plan into a creative brief
- Learn from smart and bad examples of the creative brief
- Use the ABC’s advertising decision-making tool
- Give inspiring feedback on advertising that pushes for great work
- Use our six questions to help frame your media planning
- Line up media choices to where consumers are most willing to engage with your brand
5. How to analyze your brand’s performance
Too few marketers take the time to dig into data analytics. There is no value in having access to data if you are not using it to discover meaningful insights.
The best brand leaders can tell strategic stories through analytics. With our brand management books, I will show you how to create a deep-dive business review, looking at the marketplace, consumers, competitors, channels, and brand. Then, I will teach how to turn your analysis into a presentation for management, showing the ideal presentation slide format. I will also provide a Finance 101 for Marketers, giving you every financial formula you need to run your brand.
In our section on how to analyze the brand’s performance, you will learn how to:
- Analyze the marketplace your brand plays in
- Assess your consumers
- Assess the retail channels you sell through
- Analyze the competitors
- Analyze the health of your brand
- Use 60 of the best analytical questions to ask
- Bring the analysis together into the drivers, inhibitors, threats, and opportunities
- Use our financial formulas for compound CAGR, price increases, COGs. and ROI
- Prepare a deep-dive business review presentation
Our brand management books will help you achieve your full potential
“Most books on branding are really for the MARCOM crowd. They sound good but you find it’s all fluff when you try to take it from words to actions. THIS BOOK IS DIFFERENT! Graham does a wonderful job laying out the steps in clear language and goes beyond advertising and social media to show how branding relates to all aspects of GENERAL as well as marketing management. Make no mistake: there is a strong theoretical foundation for all he says…but he spares you the buzzwords. Next year my students will all be using this book.”
Kenneth B. Wong
Distinguished Professor, S.J. Smith School of Business, Queen’s University
“Whether you’re an aspiring marketer trying to elevate your brand, or an established leader looking to separate your brand from competitors – Beloved Brands and B2B Brands are absolute “must-have” brand management books that masterfully articulate the essence of effective brand marketing through a series of practical concepts and relevant examples.”
Keith A. Gordon
President & CEO of Fight For Children, and former President of NFL Players Inc.
“Beloved Brands is the definitive, must-read, toolkit for brand building! Graham Robertson has produced a straight-forward marketing book for anyone who wants meaningful distance from the competition, greater customer engagement, increased brand loyalty, or more customer referrals! Drop this book into your shopping cart!”