10 Things I Hate About Branding


Frankly it takes a lot of work to stay on top of my brand. If only I could just push a button like the Staples “Easy Button” ( which I have on my desk). I hate that I can’t!

I hate having to remind businesses that their brand is more than their logo. I have every design shop and ad specialty shop to blame for the mis-information I guess. (I could be painting with big a brush too)

I hate companies who don’t realize that branding is a top down initiative. Without the captain on board, who’s piloting the brand?

Just too many great books to read. I’m stuck on historical fiction right now and so slipping in books on branding is a tight fit – I hate that.

I hate those who confuse their brand message with their slogan. There is a difference. I guess since they are both important, I should be happy that they have anything.

I hate followers. Why do some businesses still feel they must follow the leader in their category? A commenter to one of my articles recently lamented their displeasure at businesses who copy the leader’s image almost to the letter. Sheesh!

I also hate people online who make the simple complicated in an attempt to screw a few dollars out of your pocket, only to reveal the obvious. If you see something online you want to get into, email the author – I’m sure they’ll help you.

I love it when someone says, “Hey, you’re the branding guy!” I hate that it took so long.

Sometimes I hate that consistency is worth so much to your brand. I get the itch like many of us to change things up a bit. BUT, my better judgement knows that that would diminish what I have achieved so far.

Sometimes I hate focus groups when judging brand image. By their nature they look to criticize regardless if it is even necessary. Sometimes you just have to go with your gut. Was your brand built on consensus or instinct?

Thanks for letting me vent a small bit, I hate keeping it bottled up inside.


  1. haha nice list… I agree. It was a good vent

  2. hi Ed,
    Interesting point #10 about the ever popular “focus groups”. As you say, sometimes the herd mentality is just plain wrong, and you need to go with your gut. Other times, going with you gut (and taking the risk of bucking the trend) can be the entirely wrong decision.
    Sure would be nice to have a Staples Easy Button when it came to making decisions! 🙂
    ~ Steve (the trade show displays guy)

  3. I laughed out loud. Perhaps you were having the same kind of day I was having yesterday? 😉

    Good list. I know what you mean on a lot of them.

    I hate that I just ordered 2 more books from Amazon on Branding when I’d rather be reading James Patterson, or some other suspense book.

    I hate that I am certain of my brand, but then every once in a while, I question it.

    Fun article. Nice to add to your vent. 😉

    Erin Kennedy
    Professional Resume Services

  4. Sometimes we are worse than our clients eh? Thanks for your support.

  5. Interesting things. Branding is new for me. Thanks for information.

  6. Loved your number 1 point. Branding is indeed, a long term process. It really takes time to inject good image of your company/brand to prospects and customers.

  7. That would be too easy now wouldn’t it?

  8. Is it bad for the brand to change things a little bit? I keep refocusing a bit, not big changes, but as I learn, I figure things out and make changes to accommodate. Since I’ve heard somewhere that you are the branding guy, I thought you might know. Thanks!

  9. Tweaking is a good thing Conrad. Things I’d watch not to change much would be your brand image. It’s one thing your public sees repeatedly and it grows into an icon for you eventually. All brands evolve. You are doing exactly that – it’s healthy for your brand.

  10. It seems that a majority of what you hate about branding stems from clients’ lack of education on the practise

  11. Yeah Branding is very difficult, sometimes even the hardest work can’t change a brand’s perception… and sometimes the hardest work against a brand can’t ding their shiny armor. Good thing my major right now is Finance and not marketing, hehe.

    Till then,


  12. Hmmm. Thanks for pointing that out Musically – it never occured to me.

    So I guess ‘Used Tires’, a strong brand has it’s pro’s and con’s depending on perspective.

  13. Tony Alverio says

    Hey Ed,

    Great post! I agree totally with you, I hate when people try to copy exactly their sponsor. I believe that each person should be genuine and unique in branding themselves.


  14. Thanks Tony, I appreciate your comment.

  15. Tia Martinson says

    Thanks, Ed.
    This is funny! I enjoyed your rant and I will pass this along!

  16. Nice post.

    How does one find an Easy Button icon to brand with the company name such as Staples did?


  17. Develop your own icon Janine. First come up with your own “Easy Process” that speaks to your own business and then give it a name and market it as your differentiator.

  18. great list – I can totally relate! … thanks for sharing 🙂