What the Pandemic Means for Brands with Emmanuel Probst


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“The pandemic has forced brands to change the way they communicate and the way they operate.” As a research professor, author, and VP at Ipsos, Emmanuel Probst spends a lot of time studying, teaching, and writing about consumer behavior. His latest update to Brand Hacks provides brand builders with a useful compass for navigating the increasingly challenging world we find ourselves in. We discussed all of this and more this week on the On Brand podcast.

About Emmanuel Probst

Dr. Emmanuel Probst’s background combines over 15 years of market research and marketing experience with strong academic achievements. As Senior Vice President at Ipsos, Emmanuel supports his clients by providing them with a full understanding of their customer’s journey. His experience spans a wide range of industries, including consumer packaged goods, retail, financial services, advertising agencies, and media outlets. He is the author of the upcoming book Brand Hacks: How to Build Brands by Fulfilling the Consumer Quest for Meaning (September 2021).

Dr. Probst teaches Consumer Market Research at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). Emmanuel holds an MBA in Marketing from the University of Hull, United Kingdom and a Doctorate in Consumer Psychology from Nottingham Trent University, United Kingdom.

Episode Highlights

What does the ongoing global pandemic mean for brands? “Everything has changed and nothing has changed.” Brands are still focused on the quest for meaning.

What has changed specifically? “What has changed is how we deliver our brands to our customers. The world now is hybrid—or else.”

Brands need to demonstrate their purpose. “You need to demonstrate purpose instead of just talking about it,” says Emmanuel. “Brands like Patagonia and National Geographic are built around purpose.” But, he notes, tech brands like Google and Apple are starting to retool around purpose.

What brand has made Emmanuel smile recently? In keeping with our theme of brand meaning and purpose, Emmanuel pointed to the (long overdue) rebranding campaign of Ben's Original, formerly Uncle Ben's. This is another example of a brand walking its talk.

To learn more about Emmanuel, check out his book Brand Hacks on Amazon, the useful resources on the Ipsos website, as well as Emmanuel's own site.

As We Wrap …

Did you hear something you liked on this episode or another? Do you have a question you’d like our guests to answer? Let me know on Twitter using the hashtag #OnBrandPodcast and you may just hear your thoughts here on the show.

On Brand is sponsored by my book Brand Now. Discover the seven dynamics to help your brand stand out in our crowded, distracted world. Order now and get special digital extras. Learn more.

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Until next week, I’ll see you on the Internet!

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