If there’s one major problem affecting advertising and marketing, it’s short-term thinking — all across the board. Companies and brands are living and dying by quarterly financial results; agencies have increasingly less AOR client relationships and survive on project work, making it impossible to plan for the future; even startups with big dreams and disruptive business plans often look for the first good chance to sell and cash out.
So to think in different terms, there’s Mark Miller and Lucas Conley’s Legacy In the Making: Building a Long-Term Brand to Stand Out in a Short-Term World.
The book is divided into a series of case studies. There’s a very interesting mix of old and new brands here: Taylor Guitars and the San Diego Zoo sit alongside Girls Who Code and The Honest Company. So it’s not merely a study in decades-old brands. The common theme is that in these companies and organizations, the groundwork is being laid for the type of long-term success that can survive a founder’s departure or market disruption.
Richly designed (at least the hardback version) and full of questions and ways for the reader to apply the lessons learned from the case studies, Legacy In The Making is quite compelling. It’s ideal for founders, managers, and marketing executives who want to ensure their brands live on past the current leadership team. To me, Legacy In The Making reads like a modern version of “In Search of Excellence.” Let’s hope that in a few years, the book won’t be filled with where-are-they-now examples.
Special thanks to FSB Associates for providing me with a review copy.