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Saving the Day

Does your brand need triage? Here's something to help.

By Mark Henricks

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

It's great to have a strong brand customers love andare happy to pay a premium for, but when a brand gets overextended,underadvertised, overpriced or develops other problems, fewentrepreneurs know what to do. In Brand Aid (Amacom, $24), author andmarketing consultant Brad VanAuken goes a long way toward remedyingthese problems. VanAuken, a veteran who has done stints withHallmark and other redoubtable branders, covers scores ofbrand-related topics, including designing a brand, building it,leveraging it and measuring its success.

Some of his more entrepreneur-relevant material tells how tomake a brand stand out using limited resources. Smaller companiesusually don't do it like the big guys, VanAuken says. Insteadof consistently, steadily and expensively trumpeting a leadershipmessage (the preferred method of big branding outfits),entrepreneurs are more likely to succeed with focused, disruptivetechniques. Typically, this means concentrating on a core niche andtaking a bold marketing stand that attempts to redefine thecategory by using nontraditional marketing approaches. VanAuken, itshould be noted, has gone the big-company route in attempting toposition his reference book. It may not be a mind-alteringbreakthrough, but overall, it's a significant addition to thebrand marketing library.

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