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Branding is for Cows

We created the BrandScience™ methodology.

Branding is something you do to cows. It makes sense if you’re a rancher, since cows do tend to look alike. It’s also useful to lots of businessmen, and they brand things like detergents or shoes for almost the same reason as ranchers. Branding is what you do when there’s nothing original about your product.” – Roy Disney

The application for our proprietary BrandScience methodology creates successful strategies for Genuine Brands.

If you are interested in “branding,” we politely suggest that you get a cow.

The successful development of Genuine Brands follows a disciplined-proven approach to creating the right strategy. The absence of a strategy for your brand almost insures that a brand will be relegated to exist in the “sea of sameness.” A new slogan or tagline is not a strategy.

Duane Knapp is a Brand Scientist. He has been responsible for creating the “science” critical to developing Genuine Brands for over 30 years. His work is now referred to collectively as the BrandScience™ Methodologies.

As an executive officer, he has applied his science to help build many Genuine Brands. These include the development of new brands such as Homewood Suites, Cinnabon and Discoveries Catalog (now Skymall). He has also transformed existing brands, including Holiday Inn and Harrah’s, Embassy Suites, Hampton Inn and Residence Inn.

Duane founded BrandStrategy, Inc. in 1992 and began privately advising boards of directors and executive teams.  He has developed a proprietary compendium of BrandScience Methodologies based on his experience, empirical evidence and a thorough knowledge of exceptional brand performance.

In partnership with industry thought leaders, we have developed specific proprietary BrandScience methodologies for the following markets:

  • Health care and health science
  • Food and beverage
  • Consumer products (food, beverage, packaged products etc.)
  • Community brands (countries, states, cities, counties, economic development etc.)
  • Destinations and travel (hotels, restaurants, transportation, attractions etc.)
  • Member centric (co-operatives, credit unions etc.)
  • Professional associations (doctors, lawyers, scientists, architects, trades etc.)
  • Retail and on-line stores (grocery, fashion etc.)
  • Agricultural (wineries, viticultural areas, fruits, vegetables, dairy etc.)
  • Celebrities and professional athletes

He is responsible for developing the following BrandScience Methodologies:

BrandMindset® Approach

This proprietary science was introduced in the BrandMindset® book in 1999. It established for the first time the principle that there is a required mindset and attitude that must be understood and adopted if an organization is planning to create a “one of kind” Genuine Brand. With decades of experience observing the industry, this BrandMindset approach has itself become a BrandScience, rooted in the same practices, and dictated by the Scientific Method.

The BrandMindset outlined four critical steps for creating a Genuine Brand in the same way a scientist applies the “Scientific Method”:

  • Assessing the brand’s current situation and future prospects – Observation and description of a phenomenon
  • Developing the BrandPromise® commitment – Formulation of hypothesis
  • Creating the Brand Blueprint – Use of the hypothesis to predict
  • Finalizing a Brand Culturalization plan and a written BrandStrategy Doctrine – Performance of experimental tests

BrandPromise® Commitment

Duane discovered that Genuine Brands don’t just provide quality services or products; they are passionate about how their customers feel. They want customers to feel special… not just good. Hence, Duane conceived the “Promise” science. His book, The BrandPromise, introduced this science in 2008, and it has since become widely adopted across the business marketplace.

The BrandPromise introduced the three BrandPromise Principles:

  • Provide a unique experience with products and services that enhance customer’s lives.
  • Achieve associate (employee) partnership, passion and support for a Promise.
  • Create a perception of exceptional value and distinctive benefits.

Destination BrandScience

Working in partnership with the leaders of the International Association of Convention and Visitors Bureau (IACVB) and its members, he developed the BrandScience methodology for destinations. As part of their strategy, the International Association of Convention and Visitors Bureau became Destinations International and its industry members have implemented a paradigm shift to become “destination marketing organizations.”

This science provides the roadmap for building strategies for destination brands including destinations, ports, airports, convention centers, cities, counties, associations, visitor and convention bureaus, and tourism boards worldwide.

Global Destination BrandScience, published in 2012, is the guide that outlines the disciplined proven science by which a destination organization can make a unique and meaningful contribution– one that goes above and beyond routine travel and tourism and that positively contributes to the economic viability of its community!

A successful destination must think like a “Genuine Brand” from two perspectives. First, as a destination for guests and second, as a marketing organization. This requires a different mindset, perspective and strategy than business as usual. Successful destinations need to be perceived as distinctive and make a BrandPromise® (Promise) commitment to their guests, stakeholders and influencers that delivers emotional and functional benefits.

While various community agencies may have somewhat different missions, they all have the same interest in creating an exceptional “destination” that is attractive to residents, businesses, visitors, new investment, and development. The new paradigm for success is about optimizing the economic opportunities for everyone in the community.

Transformation BrandScience™

In the business landscape, change is driving everything and paradigm shifts are occurring everywhere. Examples include analog to digital, talk to text, programmed media to social media, etc. In today’s business climate, it’s essential for individuals and organizations to understand how to successfully harness the inevitability of change for their benefit.

As we consider the dynamics and opportunities for change, it’s important to understand the difference between more ordinary change (which is incremental and focused on small steps) and transformational change (which is radical and paradigm-shifting). We define transformation as “a change in the form, nature or character.”

There truly is a science of transformation – a newly emerging field of inquiry that explores the human side of how we undergo radical, paradigm-altering change.

While the study of human transformation has been historically focused on “personal” situations, we believe it can be a powerful mindset to create strategies that move organizations to new levels of performance and success.

Our Transformation BrandScience is based on four principles:

  • 1. The human brain is designed for transformation.
  • 2. Transformational change happens through “tipping points” – rapid alterations that occur once a critical ratio has been achieved.
  • 3. Successful transformation can be powered by “Promises” – statements of intentionality and commitment.
  • 4. Transformation requires a disciplined approach in order to optimize value leadership, customer relevancy and benefits and Promise performance.

The BrandScience Advantage

BrandStrategy Advisors:
Clients learn, own, and develop  brand solutions
Clients produce reports with our partnership
Clients implement strategy

Typical Consultants:
Consultants learn clients’ business and direct solutions
Consultants produce reports
Consultants direct the implementation