- 20 years experience working on billion-dollar brands in the food & beverage industries including PepsiCo, Campbell’s Soup, Nestle and General Mills.
- Expert and speaker on the practice of adopting a "challenger" strategy and mindset, and how challengers approach innovation.
- Clients include: Marriott Hotels & Resorts, Darden Restaurants, Kraft/Cadbury, Hewlett Packard, SAB Miller Molson Coors, Jim Beam, Bayer, Novartis, Callaway Golf, New Balance, Crayola, Red Bull, PepsiCo, Cargill, Nestle, Reckitt Benckiser, Schick Wilkinson and Del Monte.
- All 8 Best Practices
- Pre-Call Discovery Process
- One-on-One Call with Expert
- Session Summary Report
- Post-Session Engagement
Challenger Brand Thinking, Strategy and Behavior
- Brand belief
Challenger brands don't let the competition, category or consumer define who they are and what they stand for. Instead, they define themselves by a strong point-of-view about their industry and the world that they care deeply about and believe strongly in. They identify and embrace some universal conflict or tension in the world, and then take a stand on one side of the issue and create a "monster" or "enemy" out of the thing they are trying to challenge, change and defeat.
They are led by their sense of belief and conviction, which is more than just having a sense of mission or purpose. They understand clearly why their company or brand exists (not just what they make/sell or how they deliver their products, services and experiences) and what profound change they are trying to bring about. They are driven by an authentic sense of belief in the cause they have undertaken.
- Brand story
While strong challenger brands are defined and driven by a strong sense of belief, conviction, values and a mission to bring about change, how they express those brand beliefs and identity is through their brand story — the words, ideas and actions that project what their brand and company stands for. While their values, beliefs, cause and identity are enduring qualities that do not change much over time, how that sense of belief and brand identity gets expressed through their story or brand narrative can evolve over time.
For a challenger, it's about identifying a conflict, a protagonist and an antagonist, and an inciting incident that compels the fight and quest for change, and then expressing that story through various words, actions and ideas that communicates and projects the story and journey we buy into when we purchase this brand and its offer.
- Challenger brand thinking
"Challenger" is a state of mind, not a state of market. While it can certainly apply to brands or companies who see themselves not as the market leader with the no. 1 market share position it can mean much more than that, and is equally relevant and applicable to market leaders who want to challenge themselves to continue to lead and grow.
- It's about having a bold ambition to change your market, industry or world in a way that outstrips your available resources (people, time, money, assets).
- It's about a restless desire to avoid complacency at all cost and to constantly challenge the status quo in search of a better, more innovative way of doing things.
- It's about embracing your constraints, and seeing the opportunity in the limitations of not being the market leader and doing more with less.
- It's about embracing a different, but rigorous strategic approach to achieve significantly above-average growth in an unconventional way that is anything but business as usual.
- It's about leading and winning by punching above your weight rather than simply following the habits, routines and conventions established by the past, the industry or market leader.
- Sacrifice to over-commit
Challengers are often limited in their resources, so they can't afford to waste resources by funding too many ideas or initiatives. Therefore, strong challengers know how to say no to both good and bad ideas, so they can over-commit their available resources to the best ideas that will have the greatest impact in the market place and with their loyal fans and advocates. Instead of thinking about giving 110 percent effort, Challengers know they must deliver 400 percent extra effort just to level the playing field with the resources, voice and impact the larger players in their markets may have.
Instead of trying to do 10 priorities, Challengers must focus on just the two or three ideas, initiatives and actions that best project what they believe in and stand for. They disproportionately commit their available resources to those ideas for maximum impact. The result: It gets them noticed and get's people talking – especially those people who share the brand's beliefs and what the brand/company stands for.