A revelatory guide on how to build, sustain and grow a brand.
A brand is either beloved, or it’s noise. We live in a fast-paced world of immediate gratification where consumers can listen to any song, watch any movie, or read any article, with the touch of a few buttons. They are peppered with hyper-personalized targeting for products that can be ordered seamlessly and arrive within hours. And if your brand isn’t the first to come to mind, they’ll click that button and it’ll be delivered by someone else.
So how do you make sure your brand connects with consumers? Branding that Means Business draws from the authors’ experience and business literature as well as psychology, sociology, and even anthropology to show readers that while any brand serves the business, the mechanisms that enable it are all about connecting with people. Readers will learn how to create, maintain, and operationalize their brand, and think creatively about how to differentiate their product and most importantly, make consumers fall in love with it.
About the Author
Matt Johnson, PhD is a researcher, writer, and professor at Hult International Business School in San Francisco. His research focus is on applying this neuroscientific perspective to better understand consumer experience and decision making. A writer for Psychology Today, and a regular contributor to outlets such as Forbes, BBC, and Business Insider, he regularly provides expert opinion and thought leadership on a range of topics related to the human side of business. He advises both start-ups and large brands in his native Bay Area and has worked with Nike as an expert-in-residence in Portland, Oregon. He is the founder of the consumer behavior blog PopNeuro, and the author of Blindsight:The (Mostly) Hidden Ways Marketing Reshapes our Brains.
Tessa G. Misiaszek is a speaker, writer, and professor who, throughout her professional and academic experience, has examined the intersection between marketing strategy and workplace culture. Misiaszek completed her PhD at Simmons University in Boston and taught in the Simmons School of Management and Hult International Business School for several years. She also holds a master’s degree in public health and a BSc in resource economics from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She spent nearly two decades developing human capital strategies to improve health care, with an emphasis on provider–patient communication. Today, Misiaszek is the head of research for the Korn Ferry Institute, an Instructor with Harvard Division of Continuing Education, and cofounder of the Happy at Work podcast.
“By bridging the gap between brain science and business effects, Matt Johnson and Tessa Misiaszek have produced the most insightful book on branding of the last twenty years.”—Rory Sutherland, vice chairman of Ogilvy and author of Alchemy: The Dark Art and Curious Science of Creating Magic in Brands, Business, and Life
“This book is brimming with insight. Johnson and Misiaszek are experts on the science behind wise business decisions, and here they explain how to create enduring, meaningful brands that connect with their consumers. The business landscape has never been busier, but the authors wisely—and entertainingly—explain how to rise above the crowd.”—Adam Alter, professor of marketing and psychology, NYU Stern School of Business, and New York Times–bestselling author of Irresistible and Drunk Tank Pink
“With a solid focus on brands as important carriers of cultural meaning that enhances our lives, the authors bring a fresh, multidisciplinary approach to understanding why brands matter to, and create value for, consumers. This book offers focused advice for building and shepherding brands that symbolically deliver meaning that addresses the socio-cultural needs of contemporary consumers.”—Jill Avery, marketing professor at Harvard Business School
“The digital economy is also the fragmented economy: which influencers or AI-enabled bots can customers rely on? Matt Johnson and Tessa Misiaszek brilliantly demonstrate how purpose-driven brands can inspire and guide people, businesses, and ultimately societies in search of meaning.”—Jean-Marc Laouchez, president of the Korn Ferry Institute
“It’s no secret that our business ecosystem is becoming increasingly complex, dynamic, and unpredictable. Applying a social neuroscience lens to branding, the authors address this problem head-on, offering readers practical steps for harnessing the fundamentals of human nature to build compelling and enduring brands that deeply connect with customers. This is an extremely engaging, no-nonsense, and accessible book that could not be more relevant in our ever-changing world of work—a must-read!”—Dr. Jacinta M. Jiménez, psychologist, VP of Coach Innovation at BetterUp, and awardwinning author of The Burnout Fix
“This book goes beyond the buzzwords and hype surrounding marketing and brand success. Johnson and Misiaszek elegantly integrate the latest thinking about brands—their purpose, value, and impact—as well as the specific lessons that today’s executives can gain from real-world cases and the latest scientific research. It then offers cogent advice on what practical steps should be taken to enhance the value that firms create for their stakeholders. This is an important and highly accessible book, filled with great examples for marketers to learn from and apply.”—Philip Sugai, professor of marketing at Doshisha Business School, and author of The Value Plan
“A wonderful blend of academic insights and practical know-how.”—Richard Shotton, author of The Choice Factory: 25 Behavioural Biases that Influence what We Buy
“Perhaps the most important—and hardest—problem any business faces is how to create a successful brand; a brand that deeply resonates with consumers and that doesn’t get lost in the increasingly fragmented ‘noise’ of the modern media landscape. In this brilliant book, Johnson and Misiaszek clearly and engagingly explain the role brands play in the life of today’s consumers, and how to create brands that successfully change the minds and behaviour of consumers—for good.”—Richard Chattaway, CEO of BVA Nudge Unit UK and author of The Behaviour Business