If all the holiday ads featuring Christmas trees were planted side by side, they would fill an entire forest. So it is refreshing to see some companies give their own creative spin to this overworked visual cliche. The message is concise, amusing and not cloyingly sentimental – and the ads are free of reindeer, rosy-cheeked Santa, and overly cute children in bathrobes and fuzzy slippers running to their presents under the Christmas. A nice change of pace. Merry Christmas!
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Brand consultant Alina Wheeler has developed a phased process for researching, clarifying and implementing a brand strategy. A reminder that building a strong brand demands more than a logo, Wheeler outlines a disciplined approach that has been used with success by several major companies. Her book Designing Brand Identity: Essential Guide for the Whole Branding Team (John Wiley & Sons, third edition) distills this process into five easy-to-follow steps. It’s worthwhile advice. Following this process will not guarantee branding success, but ignoring it will inevitably lead to a muddled identity program that confuses consumers and employees alike.