Only twenty-five percent of American respondents in a recent Ernst & Young study said that brand loyalty affected how they shopped.
For established brands, this is a nightmare. You can never coast on past performance … and the price premium that a recognized brand can charge has shrunk.

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Back in November, 2013, I gave a presentation at the University of Oregon titled, VERSUS: Exploring Opposites and Choosing Sides in the Interactive Industry. "Why Substance?" is the root of the presentation, asking the question on a number of levels... why Substance exists as a company, why Substance is the best interactive agency for our clients and prospective clients, why Substance is a great place to work... (This is the first in a series of five posts, taking the presentation and parsing it out in blog format.)

I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and constitutions, but laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors.

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This was my first time at Outdoor Retailer, one of the world's largest and most comprehensive trade shows for outdoor and adventure brands. What I experienced there was overwhelming, inspiring, a bit puzzling, and the desire to purchase a ton of new gear. And I returned to Substance with some thoughts about the experience: the role of brand online for adventure brands, and the brand opportunities for retailer and consumer education.

Our job as an interactive agency isn’t to only tell inspiring stories, just as it isn’t to simply provide information. Our job is to blend inspiration and information to enable people to create their own inspiring stories. It’s not enough to tell the stories that matter. We aspire to more than that. Our job is to tell the stories that matter and drive people to action.

Make every product better than it’s ever been done before. Make the parts you cannot see as well as the parts you can see. Use only the best materials, even for the most everyday items. Give the same attention to the smallest detail as you do to the largest. Design every item you make to last forever.

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