MARKETING MIX: Book of the week

Global Brand Strategy by Sicco van Gelder (Kogan Page, £25)

This book is a remarkable attempt to summarise how to build a global brand. What the author shows is that it's a tricky business, requiring sensitivity both to an organisation's internal culture and the very different external environments in which it operates.

Van Gelder builds a multi-layered analysis of the many factors that shape how a brand is perceived in different markets and cultures. It's an awesome act of scholarship that would please an academic, yet packed with enough practical examples that a marketing professional can see its relevance.

What becomes apparent from this global tour is the sheer number of factors that challenge the idea of a one-size-fits-all global strategy. Cultural conventions and market circumstances differ so much by country that great skill is needed to position a brand effectively in each.

The author's international experience and understanding of different cultures help to make this is an impressive read. Critics might complain that it largely sidesteps moral debates about global branding; but for those who are concerned with the practicalities of internationalising a brand, it makes an excellent - if somewhat intimidating - reference for the many pitfalls to avoid.

John Moore is founder and director of


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Microsoft profits boosted by cloud computing drive
Oasis #springasmile digital campaign gets people doing good deeds
Coca-Cola: 'Don't approach bloggers with a fait accompli'
Tesco CMO Matt Atkinson: 'It is so important not to stereotype mothers'
McDonald's gives Ronald a new look ahead of global 'Fun times' social media push
In pictures: BrewDog opens first craft beer shop BottleDog for 'beer aficionados'
Facebook ad revenue leaps $1bn as it invests in targeting
Malteser or Maltesers? Mars takes Hershey trademark dispute to court
Apple Q2 profits top $10bn as iPhone sales soar
Lynx tells men not to leave love to fate
HBO captures awkwardness of watching sex scenes with parents
Primark to open first US stores with Boston chosen as flagship location
Marketing spend on the up but a reality check is needed before celebrating
Top 10 ads of the week: Jackpotjoy and BT Broadband fend off Kevin Bacon
Lidl beats Tesco to 10m Facebook fans
Center Parcs ad banned for encouraging parents to take kids out of school
Coca-Cola, Cadbury and Amazon named top brands for targeting youth market
Leaked document shows Nokia to be rebranded as Microsoft Mobile
Nike lays-off hardware staff in move that casts doubt on future of FuelBand
Greenpeace says save the bees or humans will die
What brands need to know about changes to VAT and online downloads in 2015
Jimmy Savile victims urged to claim compensation in new ad campaign
UKIP launches biggest  ad campaign and stirs up 'racist' accusations
Apple boss Tim Cook provides voiceover on ad touting firm's renewed green commitments
John Lewis walks consumers through its history to celebrate 150 years of business
Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up
Hottest virals: Cute puppies star in Pedigree ad, plus Idris Elba and Fruyo
Amnesty International burns candles to illuminate new hope
Tom of Finland's 'homoerotic' drawings made into stamps
Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers