I had a chance to talk with Jeff Manning, the mind behind the famous "got milk?" campaign, today when he presented to the Wichita Chapter of the American Marketing Association. I was luck enough to sit by him during the event, and the branding genius left me with a few nuggets:
1) We are all brands. By extension, we are branding all the time. We cultivate our brand with every interaction, business and social.
2) Branding is evolving. "Branding" has the tendency to be a catchall phrase. There are definite things that branding is and definite things that it is not. It is not just logos and visual associations. Branding is experiential, organic, conversational and both a long-term and short-term process.
The "got milk?" work is certainly inspiring for us marketers. Beyond the humor and engaging nature of the campaign elements lie deeper issues of deprivation and simplicity that we can all learn from.