Creating a Demand for the Brand

There’s A Lot to Admire About These Three Launches

It’s all about the brand, baby.

As most seasoned marketing or PR professionals can attest, launching a new brand, or refreshing a current brand, can be a daunting task. There are companies that do it well (e.g. Apple’s iPhone unveil), and those that don’t (e.g. New Coke, anyone?). However, I’m always amazed by the creativity and innovation I’ve seen over the years as our industry continues to evolve. Here are a few of my personal favorites:

1. Sacramento Republic FC

Live. Work. Play. ad for Sacramento Republic FC. (courtesy of Sac Republic FC’s YouTube channel).

Recently, I had the opportunity to listen to a presentation by Erika Bjork, Vice President of Communications for Sacramento Republic FC, a Division II soccer team. It wasn’t the first time I’d heard her share the story of the team’s launch in 2012, but it always inspires me. They have a great handle on their target market (mostly millennials) and the community they serve (the increasingly hip government town of Sacramento). They also have a lot of pride in their roots — their colors and crest are modeled after the State of California flag and the City of Sacramento. As a relatively new brand, I’m excited to see where they take it in the next five years.

2. Kaiser Permanente

An old colleague of mine at UC Berkeley, Claire Holmes, was one of the brains behind this mega-successful campaign for Kaiser Permanente. Launched in 2004, “Thrive” shifted the narrative about healthcare to focus on health and wellness. It became more personal, and often times even funny (like the commercial above). And most of all, it’s memorable. That must be why — 13 years later — they’ve stuck with it.

3. Old Spice

In 2010, Old Spice went through a major brand refresh — the deodorant my grandpa used to wear (seriously!) wanted to appeal to a younger generation. Along came “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like” — aka Isaiah Mustafa. The first commercial, seen above, went viral and made Isaiah an overnight sensation. People finally started to view the decades-old brand differently — it was finally hip. Isaiah was eventually replaced by Terry Crews, but the Old Spice guy lives on. And that guy even has a Swagger line now!

These are just a few of my favorites — what are yours? Please hit me up in the comments! And if you like this post, please like the heart to share it on Medium!

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