The Gravity of Branding… or Something Like That.

Branding is a huge concern among organizations and the agencies that serve them.  The brand name – of the company and the products and the services… the logo, the tagline, the graphics, and so much more.  Even tastes, sounds, textures and colors. The uniform an employee wears, the conversations he or she has with customers, the method of resolving issues… these are all key elements of branding.


And although many industry gurus would like you to think there is something mysterious and highly scientific about the process and importance of branding, I am reminded of George Clooney’s words in Gravity, “it’s not rocket science.”

Shakespeare once wrote: “What’s in a name? that which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet…” Which explains why such goofy names as Google, Amazon and SAP can attain ranking on the FORBES list of The World’s Most Valuable Brands.

They are real companies doing real things the right way.  Not propped up shells of organizations with quasi intellectual and extraordinarily quirky leaders employing zany marketing schemes that delude the public into believing in the power of smoke and mirrors.

In short, less focus on the magic of creating good branding and more focus on creating a good business – a useful product or service – is more likely to bring success in the long run. Don’t get me wrong, a great brand marketing plan is a necessity to ensure success.  As Jesus said: “No one, when he has lit a lamp, puts it in a cellar or under a basket, but on a stand, that those who come in may see the light.”

But the growing myth of the power of branding is highly exaggerated. And to comment on this, I turn to the words of John F. Kennedy, spoken 51 years ago to a group of young Yale graduates: “For the great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie—deliberate, contrived, and dishonest—but the myth—persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the cliches of our forebears. We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.”

Think about it.

Jim Sweeney


Jim is a veteran of the agency industry and the founder of Sweeney. He is uncommonly passionate about the idea of creating and implementing insanely great marketing campaigns that achieve insanely great results. He pioneered the full-service, full-circle agency model and continues to forge new ideas in an ever-changing industry. And he is accessible to everyone about anything, seemingly all the time, serving as a mentor to all agency personnel and clients.