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Is it really you?

1. A bad ad:  One that fails the "logo test" — could you replace your logo with a competitor’s and still use the ad?

John Moore provides a great example with the new Starbucks ads, which could easily be for Caribou Coffee (look here).  Car companies fail this test all the time.

2. A bad motto: One that fails the "uniqueness test" — could any competitor use your motto?

Bearing Point "gets things done. Differently." Whatever. So does my toilet paper.  Here’s a comically generic list if why they are "different":

Result: Measurable & Sustainable.
Approach: Collaborative & Flexible.
People: Passionate & Experienced.

That could be a direct quote from every MBA resume we get.  Read "Why Johnny Can’t Brand" for a tutorial on how to create a dominant selling idea.

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