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on May 7, 2005
I read this in one shot on a 6.5 hour flight to Kauai against monster headwinds. Since then I have picked it up and read sections and tried to make changes in my company based on what I learned. Thanks to Lindstrom's book, I can certainly tell you I am on a brand journey.

I am sure every reviewer will mention Singapore Airlines. We were holding a conference and I wanted to create that distinct SANS Institute smell. So I bought five aromatic dispensers and test scents with names like "Ocean Feeling". I had people stationed to observe the customers and make note of anything they said about smell. Zero results. Why? The biggest reason is probably the volume of air in a modern conference center is several orders of magnitude greater than a jet.

We are working on the tips the author gives for music, here I am convinced he is right, I cannot listen to Rhapsody in Blue without thinking about United Airlines.

Without this book, I would have thought brand was a logo and picking some colors and maybe a jingle. My eyes are opened, and at this point I know it will be a long journey, but I am sure I will refer to the book again and again. Highly recommended for any business owner or organizational executive.
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on May 12, 2005
Martin Lindstrom's Brand Sense: Build Powerful Brands Through Touch, Taste, Smell, Sight And Sound provides an unusual treatise based on Millward Brown's study linking branding and sensory awareness. 'Sensory branding' is a relatively new concept: Brand Sense takes the next step from study results to outline a six-step program for bringing brand building into modern times. Examples cover products and retail marketing alike, demonstrating the basics of establishing an appealing marketing approach based on more than sight and sound alone.
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on September 20, 2005
Martin Lindstrom has written a truly readable and provocative book. Short term goals, and the pressures to meet them, make it all too easy to view business both myopically and blinkered. Take a step back and regard your brand (and your competitors' brands) holistically. Products, services, and the delivery of the same to your customers, encomapsses all senses. Yes, some will dominate, but is important to understand which and why. If taste and smell (say) are the essence of your brand, how do you convey this in your advertising, where sight and sound are dominant?

I would have rated Brand Sense 5, but for the fact Lindstrom draws on analysis from a massive data base from Millward Brown. I would have liked to have seen some of the details - perhaps as appendices.

All in all a great read ... now I have no excuses for not doing more!
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on September 3, 2013
Well, if you like to feel free and independent you better read about manipulating of human brain-judgement by marketing and politicians. This book can help you to better run your own business or to defend yourself from the outside agressions and influences.
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on February 13, 2005
Continuing from where he left off with BRAND child, Martin Lindstrom, once again, has made me sit up and take notice of an innovative approach to contemporary marketing.

BRAND sense makes perfect sense and that's what makes it so disarmingly good. It's not that that the concepts and outcomes being postured are revolutionary, because in truth they are not. However, Lindstrom puts these notions across with such clarity that it's like a veil being lifted, and the understanding that had always been there, is now revealed.

Think about it. Why should marketers rely only on sight and sound to build brand presence, when all the other senses are equally as receptive to a savvy marketer's ability to touch its consumer base? For me, the anecodtal evidence being offered in this book, backed by credible qualitative research, points with absolute certainty to a marketing future unrecognizable from where we are currently.

Which makes the future for brand builders that much more exciting.

I loved this book for its simple human truths. Lindstrom is a past master when it comes to understanding the subtelties of consumerism, again evident in this sequel to BRAND child. I recommend it to anyone wishing to be on the cutting edge of brand knowledge and brand development.
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on February 13, 2005
Now and then we need a nudge in our thinking. BRAND sense will do just that. Rethink and reframe our traditional ways of branding. In a fast-paced world where we're bombarded with slogans, signs, messages, and catchy tunes, Lindstrom's book carefully guides brands in reframing the way they will think about and present their brand. It's an extraordinary hypothesis. It is bound to challenge every marketeer to reasses, reconfigure and reframe their brand in a way that will connect more deeply and more emotionally with the consumer.
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As Philip Kotler explains in an especially perceptive Foreword, "distinctive brands...have to be powered up to deliver a full sensory experience. It is not enough to present a product or service visually in an ad...The combination of visual and audio stimuli delivers a 2 + 2 = 5 impact. It pays even more to trigger other sensory channels - taste, touch, smell - to enhance the total impact. This is Martin Lindstrom's basis message, and he illustrates it beautifully through numerous cases with compelling arguments." Bernd Schmitt is among others who make precisely the same point. In Experiential Marketing (1997), for example, he and Alex Simonson assert that "most of marketing is limited because of its focus on features and benefits." They then presented what they characterized as "a framework" for managing those experiences. In Experiential Marketing (1999), Schmitt provides a much more detailed exposition of the limitations of traditional features-and-benefits marketing. Moreover, he moves beyond the sensory "framework" into several new dimensions, introducing what he calls "a new model" which will enable marketers to manage "all types of experiences, integrating them into holistic experiences" while "addressing key structural, strategic, and organizational challenges."

In Brand Sense, Lindstrom provides a comprehensive, cohesive, and cost-effective methodology by which to plan, implement, and then sustain effective sensory marketing. As he correctly points out, approaches to marketing have changed significantly in recent years. In the 1950s, branding belonged to the unique selling proposition (USP); by the 1960s, a focus on the emotional selling proposition (ESP) emerged; then in the 1980s, many brand managers adopted the organizational selling proposition (OSP); by the 1990s, "brands had gained enormous strength bin their own right, and the Brand Selling Proposition (BSP) took over." Inevitably, it now seems, the me selling proposition (MSP) emerged. What's next? Again I quote Lindstrom:

"There's every indication that branding will move beyond the MSP, into an even more sophisticated realm - reflecting a brave new world where the customer desperately needs something to believe in - and where brands very well might provide the answer. I call this realm HSP - the Holistic Selling proposition."

With meticulous care, Lindstrom explains how and why the methodology he recommends will enable all organizations (regardless of size or nature) to drive sales and profits with a commitment to the HSP. To his credit, he devotes far more attention to the "how" and "why" than to the "what," although he duly acknowledges the importance of creating or increasing demand for a worthy product or service.

Readers will especially appreciate Lindstrom's provision of a set of "Action Points" at the conclusion of most chapters. These will suggest how to apply the material to which they refer, and, will facilitate and expedite a periodic review later to ensure that effective follow-through has been accomplished. Obviously, it would be foolish to attempt to implement all of Lindstrom's suggestions. It remains for each reader to determine what is most appropriate to her or his organization's immediate and imminent needs. However, whether committing to Lindstrom's methodology or to any other, it is important to understand and - yes--appreciate the barriers to change initiatives when introducing any methodology which challenges, as James O'Toole so aptly characterizes them, "the ideology of comfort and the tyranny of custom."
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on August 10, 2015
Not Lindstrom's best book but still provides a ton of insights into the mind of the consumer and you can't take away that they guy knows his way with words. It is worth reading for any marketer that wish to understand what makes people buy or prefer a certain brand, but it is also good for educating consumers in spotting the tricks used by unethical marketers. However if it was choice, I would recommend you read his other book, Buyology before this one. It just a better read.
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on April 25, 2011
I am using my husband's kindle to teach Brand Sense, and the lessons have been very successful. The book is well-written and there are lots of relevant (popular culture) examples that my students can relate to. At first it was hard to teach this book, with the kindle, as I have historically preferred hard-copies of books, but I am learning to navigate the technology. And, I have to say, I think I have been proselytized.
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on April 4, 2015
Extremely helpful book that helped me view advertising so differently. Concisely written with lots of real world examples of companies and how they are changing the face of this field by incorporating our human senses to reel us in to purchase. Every consumer should be aware of how we are being manipulated to buy so we can make sound decisions that are based on rationality over emotion.
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