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I am a fan of Al Ries.

Those of you that read these articles likely know that.

Al Ries is the Godfather of the marketing strategy called Positioning.

Along with then partner, Jack Trout, Al wrote three articles introducing positioning to the advertising world in 1972. Then in 1981, they wrote what the subscribers to Advertising Age (the industry bible) later voted to be the best Media and Marketing book of all time –Positioning: the Battle for your Mind.


And as a not-so-minor side note, the #3 book on that list, was one he co-wrote with his daughter and partner for the last two decades, Laura Ries: The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding.

Pretty damn cool.

I highly recommend both of these books.

I don’t always agree with the perspective of team Ries. In their book, War in the Boardroom, they posit that people think with their brains.

Due respect, human tissue didn’t compose Beethoven’s fifth, write the Declaration of Independence or create Star Wars.

But lest we get too philosophical about it all, as marketing strategists, you’ve got to love these guys.

In 1996, Al wrote a book called Focus. The name says it all. And to this day, Ries & Ries refer to themselves as Focusing Consultants.

Let me give you a great example of focusing your brand.

David Brier is a branding pro. http://www.risingabovethenoise.com.

We call on each other’s services from time to time when needed. David calls on On Target when he needs to understand the minds of his client’s prospects, and I call on David when one of our corporate clients needs the creative and design services of a branding expert.

David recently wrote, produced and directed a commercial for a new brand that is so focused it will make you sweat.

Take a look.


Focusing a brand doesn’t get any better than that.

How do you focus your brand?

There is a point in the Ries and Ries book, The 22 immutable Laws of Branding that most businesses don’t really grasp. It is this: A brand becomes stronger when you narrow its focus. Ruth’s Chris = steaks; Toys R Us = kids toys; Office Depot…you get the idea.

David’s commercial above narrows the focus of his client’s sport’s beverage to athletes – but not just any athletes, those who Defy Limitations, Crush it…the Last One Standing.

The ultimate tool for focusing your brand is surveys. Surveys enable you to get into the mind of your public to see what they are focused on.

Surveys are what we do.

If your marketing isn’t driving traffic to your sales staff or your website in the volume you’d like, we can help you narrow the focus and strengthen your brand.

Sometimes an external look at your marketing can provide you with a whole new perspective. For more than a quarter of a century, we’ve helped companies – hundreds of them – focus their brands and increase sales and income.

We can help you, too.

“After we had your company do our market research and surveys…our response ratio went up 10 times!!!” CEO gift industry client