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Book Review: Make What They Like

Jiwa’s writing style in this book is easy and engaging, and the philosophy straddles business and life

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Marketing and brand storytelling comes down to this. Product – Meaning = Commodity. Product + Meaning = Brand. Good marketing tells the story. Great marketing is the story. You get to choose the story you want to tell, writes Bernadette Jiwa, a freelance brand story strategist, in her blog.

The philosophy is reflected in Bernadette’s new book Meaningful: The Story of Ideas That Fly (Perceptive Press). In an age of over saturation for customers, which are the products and services that establish an enduring foothold in the market? Bernadette writes that to succeed, a company must win the minds and hearts of customers. That marketing is not about convincing customers to like what you make, but about making what they like. If your company’s product or service is not meaningful in a customer’s life, it will not succeed. The author gives many examples of companies that truly do start with the customer — looking to solve a problem they have, fulfil an unmet need, create a meaningful difference in his or her life. Brands that have stories with meaning to customers stand out in today’s crowded marketplace. Her ‘Story Strategy Blueprint’ is an intuitive, specific path a company can follow to aim for such success.

With technology making it easier for companies to directly interact with their customers, innovative companies could listen to the customers and share their brand stories. If, as Jiwa writes, customers are not just buying the product, but buying the feeling, then the company has to continue to deliver.

We have recently entered the Indian market and observed the evolution of the Indian customer. From having inferior products shoved down their throats in the pre-liberalisation era to the plethora of choices now available, it is more critical than ever to engage the heart and mind of this increasingly discerning Indian customer, to connect in a meaningful way so your story becomes theirs.

Jiwa’s writing style in this book is easy and engaging, and the philosophy straddles business and life.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

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Magazine 16 May 2016 book review Perceptive Press

Anagha Dandekar

The author is Founder and President of Hardware Renaissance

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