I recently got a chance to meet and hear the story of Damaris Phillips, celebrity chef, hometown Louisville girl, and host of Southern at Heart on the Food Network. As I listened to Damaris, I couldn’t help but think of the parallels between cooking, celebrity chefs and great brands.
1. Great brands exude great passion. Damaris believes cooking is one of the great joys of life. Her passion is contagious. Throw in her killer smile and cute dresses and you’re hooked. The greatest brands make you feel excited and create a desire in you to be part of their tribe. In this case, I had to buy Damaris’s cookbook, “Southern Girl Meets Vegetarian Boy”. That’s me, getting her to autograph my cookbook. So nice to meet you! Happy Cooking! Damaris Phillips
2. Great brands are authentic. Damaris showed us a beautifully staged photo of a chicken biscuit casserole – I know sounds delicious, right? And then, a photo of the one she baked. Her casserole didn’t look beautiful, not anything like the previous photo, but she said it tasted great and that’s what mattered. She challenged us to stop comparing ourselves to others and to be authentic. Great brands understand the importance of authenticity and the value of connecting on a real human level.
3. Great brands build connections with their audience. Cooking is a great way to connect with family and friends. Cooking together invites people to make memories and create traditions. The smell alone of sugar cookies baking in the oven, for example, can trigger a fond memory. Building strong connections is a fundamental business challenge. The most successful brands create true connections and memorable moments with their audience helping build brand loyalty.
In this high-tech, automation driven world, I believe high-touch and building strong connections matter the most. People buy from people. Great brands understand they have to be more real than ever.
Remember the chicken biscuit casserole.
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