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Emotional Branding: The New Paradigm for Connecting Brands to People

Steven General

Coca-Cola, Ann Taylor, Gillette, Victoria’s Secret, and Godiva are among the many prestigious clients of Marc Gobe design and consulting firm d/g* worldwide, so his book will find an eager audience among designers, brand managers, and marketing strategists.

“Emotional Branding” is about the role brands play in our enjoyment of consuming and the importance of great design in creating those experiences. As the son of clothing retailers in a small town in France, Gobe learned early in life that the selection of products goes way beyond objective features. It requires a deep resonance with the customer and a knack for knowing how to tell a good story.

For Gobe, the most effective brands begin with sharing enthusiasm and trust person-to-person.

The book begins rather slowly with a discussion of demographic trends and contains broad generalizations about the preferences of Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y, gays, women, and so on. The topic is important and the writing is dutiful but never transcends the journalistic.

The pace picks up considerably in the second section, “Sensorial Experiences,” in which Gobe makes the case for using all the senses to involve customers with brands. He gives numerous examples of successful branding efforts involving touch, taste, smell, and sound.

The final chapter of this section even tells how some retailers have created zones of (branded) quiet for their over-stimulated customers.

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