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Brand Messaging Is Like Soup

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A seemingly common challenge on the most recent season of Top Chef offers a few unique parallels to the world of brand messaging. In the clip below, infamous food wizard Emeril Lagasse shares his view on why soup offers the best opportunity for accurately judging a chef’s abilities. His words immediately brought to mind the complexity of brand messaging, from creation to execution.

“I judge a restaurant by it.” Make no mistake, we are all being judged at all turns. Public perception not only becomes reality, but moves the P&L needle. A few seconds combing through Yelp reviews, perusing recent Tweets, and navigating your website is all it takes for an impression to be formed.

“It seems simple, but it needs structure.” To the uninitiated, soup is just some tasty broth with a little protein or starch thrown in. But not to the master chef. It is complex, even with only a few ingredients. The order in which you place those ingredients in, the length of the simmer, the degree of the boil – your every step needs to coincide with the ultimate plan.

“It’s not (simple). It’s about ingredients…depth and flavor…passion.” There is a lot to consider when building your brand and presenting it to the world. What do you want that experience to be, from first taste to last? What do you want to say? What do you want them to feel? With every single recipe, you have the choice to follow direction step-by-step or take some chances to put your own stamp on the finished product.


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Growth obsessed startup co-founder (MusicBox) and strategist-for-hire.

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