Brand Thinking and Other Noble Pursuits is the latest book from Debbie Millman. In this 'Design discussions,' we speak with the author about. Having read Naomi Klein's No Logo several years ago and been stirred by her central thesis, we were cautious about Debbie Millman's Brand. Brand thinking and other noble pursuits. [Debbie Millman] -- We are now living in a world with over one hundred brands of bottled water. The United States alone.


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brand thinking debbie milliman Millman's interviewing style is, as always, sparse, capable and insightful. She provides ample room for her subjects to speak brand thinking debbie milliman, only interjecting to continue the dialogue rather than demonstrate her personal knowledge.

The interviewees are remarkably self-aware. In her previous book of interviews How to Think Like a Great Graphic Designerwe noticed that designers with varied portfolios tend to be satisfied while record sleeve designers possibly stuck in the 70s or 80s seemed unhappy with the current order of things.


This time around, her interviews with design brand thinking debbie milliman and consultants provide an awareness of branding as selling an aspirational notion of the person one might like to be. Wally Olins observes that in the airplane industry, the planes don't differentiate the airlines, but the service does.


Consequently, the users of a particular service brand will exhibit particular behaviors. Olins is the first interview in the book and he's the first of many to use the term "tribe. Even less surprising is the lesson of Cristal, which is that after a brand identity is appropriated by an unintended constituency, choosing to disassociate oneself from the people who are buying your product is never a good brand thinking debbie milliman.

Most of brand thinking debbie milliman interview subjects express similar sentiments: The modern show Mad Men ran ads for real products e.

Design discussions: Debbie Millman on Brand Thinking: idsgn (a design blog)

Unilever's Dove which is also mentioned in Brand Thinking during their commercial breaks in meta-ads that indirectly skewered the branding process by framing them through the advertising lens of In an era where PBR can become a brand simply by not trying to appeal to the consumer, what place remains for branding?

In her interview with style observer Virginia Postrel, Millman observes that "it seems like the whole notion of consciously making something cool would immediately brand thinking debbie milliman it from being cool," and that, in a nutshell, is the dichotomy facing brand thinkers today.

Brand Thinking provides lots of insight into the conflicts inherent in the job, but gives little resolution as to how someone tasked with the job of making an old brand "cool" should proceed. One has to be able to embrace paradox to design identity for brands that extends beyond the capability brand thinking debbie milliman their products.

Brand thinking and other noble pursuits

That does not, however, mean that there is no place for the branding engines behind Juicy Couture brand thinking debbie milliman Affliction, nor that the roles taken by Us Magazine in trumpeting which styles the stars wore to what gala events will no longer drive sales.

For the unruddered masses who have yet to establish a personal identity, a brand can serve as a shortcut, a signpost to a life brand thinking debbie milliman don't yet have. Nevertheless, in the long run, those who appropriate brand cues from their icons rather than style or behavioral clues are bound to fail.

The brand of jacket that Sid Vicious wore at the dawn of punk has been long forgotten, just as James Bond's tailor varies from film to film. Given that they are still there faded, ever so slightly crinkled, yellow-taped and allI think they were rather successful.

Humans use brands to project who we want to be in the world, how we want people to perceive us, and how we want to communicate what we feel about ourselves and brand thinking debbie milliman place in society. In your professional career which spans over 25 yearshave you seen branding evolve firsthand?

We are now brand thinking debbie milliman in sensory overload. Our mass consumption of brands, technology and information has changed the way we relate, perceive and live.

Brands have become a reflection of the culture in which it participates. This evokes a unique composition of sensory perceptions, and the extension of any one of these impacts the way we think and act.

When these perceptions change, people change; brand thinking debbie milliman changes and brands change yet brand thinking debbie milliman. It is cyclical, just like most everything else. Stanley Hainsworth says storytelling is the most important aspect of creating a brand. Do you agree with this?

I think genuine storytelling is important. However, it worries me that everyone from Snooki to the Kardashians to Rick Perry, along with 85 brand consultancies, the MTA, and my neighborhood veterinary hospital are now looking to define their brand via storytelling.

I would hate for storytelling to become just another eye-roll inducing tactic to get more people to buy more stuff.

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