Americus Reed II: Brands and Identity Loyalty

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An identity theorist is someone who studies how people come to adopt certain visions or desired images of themselves. It’s a term created by Americus Reed II, Professor of Marketing at the Wharton School of Business. Branding and marketing are fundamentally about persuasion, he says, but both can have implications beyond traditional tactics and thinking. Reed joins the podcast to talk about “identity loyalty” – how a person’s psychological and emotional connection to what a brand means and stands for gets internalized and becomes a part of who they are.

Listen to this episode to learn:

  • The upside for brands that are willing to take a leap of faith and relinquish control
  • Why “segmentation” and “targeting” aren’t bad things, it just depends on how marketers treat them
  • Was Milton Friedman wrong? Or has our moral imperative changed?
  • How innovation can be part of a brand’s story and identity
  • How to use branding as a meaning system inside a company, to create employee buy-in and strengthen culture
  • Amid politicization of brands and business, when (and should) brands take a stand?
  • Why consumers are demanding a new skill set in the C-suite: authentic communication of vision and values

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