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Publisher's Summary

What is it that made Starbucks an overnight sensation and separated it from other coffee house companies? Why do many products with great product innovation, perfect locations, terrific customer experiences, even breakthrough advertising, fail to get the same visceral traction in the marketplace as brands like Apple and Nike? Patrick Hanlon, senior advertising executive and founder of Thinktopia, decided to find the answers. His search revealed seven definable assets that together construct the belief system that lies behind every successful brand, whether it's a product, service, city, personality, social cause, or movement.

In Primal Branding, Hanlon explores those seven components, known as the primal code, and shows how to use and combine them to create a community of believers in which the consumer develops a powerful emotional attachment to the brand. These techniques work for anyone involved in creating and selling an image, from marketing managers to social advocates to business leaders seeking to increase customer preference for new or existing products. Primal Branding presents a world of new possibility for marketers of every stripe, and the opportunity to move from being just another product on the shelf to becoming a desired and necessary part of the culture.

Patrick Hanlon has served as a senior executive at the world's most creative advertising agencies, working on famous brands including Absolut, UPS, Sears, and IBM. In August 2003, he founded Thinktopia and began sharing the primal branding concept with marketers from Target, LEGO, Starbucks, and elsewhere. He lives in Minneapolis.

©2006 Patrick Hanlon (P)2006 Tantor Media, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Hanlon's energetic case for thinking differently about common practices makes for a rousing read." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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    83
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    34
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    36
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    23
  • 1 Stars
    7

Performance

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    23
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Story

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Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

priceless

I haven't found anything that can teach you how to build that real cult-like customer following like this. It is very clear too. Very understandable, and like I said, I've never seen something like this else where.
The author gives the exact equation for a brand to become a part of peoples lifestyles in a unique and well researched manner. Once you hear it you will feel like you have an edge on everyone else. That if youre into marketing of course.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Too general to be useful

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

A person who enjoys success stories.

What does Alan Sklar bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

An unctuously sleazy tone.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Primal Branding?

The whole thing. His examples are just to broad to be useful.

Any additional comments?

I would recommend renaming the book to "Brand Tales : Descriptive flowery stories about mega successful brands.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Good book, hard to stay interested

I struggled to finish the book due to the fact that the beginning gives you the points, than the middle gives you examples (not so interesting but somewhat insightful) . The end describes attributes of the point from the beginning.

Summary:
The seven steps to build your brand.
1. Creation story
2. Creed
3. The icons
4. The rituals
5. The non-believers
6. the sacred words
7. the leader

Brands are belief systems, use them to make followers.
Believing is belonging.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Peter
  • Bellingham, WA, USA
  • 04-14-09

Great Concept, but Long and Boring

I think this entire book could be summed up in one hour with a second hour dedicated to practical ways to apply the principles to your business. The author gives endless examples of successful corporations and what they do, but really doesn't go into how they made their decisions or where to start with your own business. Two thumbs down to the narrator who's monotone reading became increasingly irritating. The concepts in the book are great. It's presentation and usefulness is not.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Very insightful read

For any entrepreneur seeking help in building their brand this is for you. highly recommended.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Mixed

This is a really good book...but buy the book. The audio is just a endless drone. Also, the first two hours gets into almost all of the information. The rest is case studies.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

eh ...

Not too happy with this audio book. It started out slow and progressively became worse. I completely lost interest a few chapters into it. I wish I could get my one credit back.

During the first chapter I got to hear some remarks that were at best stereotypical and at worst racist. The author talked of the "burden" of having to ride in limos, when in reality they were just town cars filled with the smell of body sweat and curry from the drivers (strike one).

The author then treated me to a description of listening to a Nigerian cab driver's cassette recording of his late grandfather's funeral tape, because as worldly as he is, he likes all kinds of music (hogwash). Not only did the very old and very white narrator do a bad Nigerian accent (I think this is what he was going for - strike two), but the author proceeded to describe the image of Nigerians jumping up while down spears chattering together to the song (strike three).

Most business books are written by out-of-touch, crusty, self-promoting businessmen or salesmen; I get it. This one was over the top. Save your time and money and buy a different audiobook.

9 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Best branding book EVER!

Best branding book EVER! I'm an avid business book reader and this book by far is one of my favorites!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

not worth it.

"create zealots for your brand, your company and your future" i got the book with the idea that the book would touch upon that topic but learned nothing. The book is just full of well known stories of how companies got there start up and who leads them

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

This is a long book of stories of examples


This book had no practical strategy on how actually use primal branding and adapted to your needs.
If you like to hear stories about other companies hits and miss, go ahead and read this book.
If you want to learn about branding and how to make it work, go for another book