Kevin Roberts on

If you read this blog frequently, you probably know that I am a big fan of Kevin Roberts. And Kevin together with his Lovemarks are both Lovemarks of mine.

Now, I would love to share with you an audio interview of Kevin on (look for the 10/13/2006 “Mentor Capital and The LoveMarks Effect” mp3 entry). You get to hear Kevin talks about his love of Rugby, his career at and love of Mary Quant, his career and his wonderful analysis & insightful stories.

It is priceless to hear Kevin talking about his reluctance in writing down a “7 steps guide to put the Lovemarks principle into service” in The Lovemarks Effect: Winning in the Consumer Revolution. Kevin sees this as taking out all the mystery. Plus it is very reasonable that Kevin wants people to hire Saatchi & Saatchi to help them! But Kevin reasons that we live in an era where consumers is boss, so Kevin is giving out the steps to the consumers.

To me, Kevin is the master chef at a Michelin four stars rated restaurant (Saatchi & Saatchi). (Note: I know Michelin max out at three stars but I am giving Kevin four stars because he wrote two books on Lovemarks!) The fact that Kevin, the master chef, has given out his recipes may stop a few clients from visiting. But wise clients will soon realize their own home-cooked or local-chef-cooked [K: me included] versions of the meals (aka Lovemarks) cannot possibly taste the same as the one cooked by the master chef.

In order to create Lovemarks, there are simply so many variables, so many subtilties and accumulated insights that can’t be learned by simply reading a book quickly without all the accumulated experiences and “common senses” that a master chef posses.

Of course, the rebel in me thinks “The Lexus Way”. Simply open your factory-tour to even your competitors. By the time, your competitors copy your process successfully a year or two later, you will have done some new and exciting refinement and improvements already!

In serious danger of repeating myself, the name of the game is “Relentless Pursuit of Excellence”! This is also why I keep this blog to share my latest “insights” and thinking. All my current clients and future potential clients can read and learn from this blog. I just hope my clients and potential clients want to be Lexus, as oppose to be General Motors or Ford. And I hope they realize that these clients and potential clients’ time are best spent on their own core businesses that made them stands out.

P.S. I am a bit surprised to hear Kevin mentioned, in passing, the two former HP Chairpersons — Carly Fiorina and Patricia Dunn. Rightly or wrongly, I have a strong view on the current HP challenges/mess. Therefore, it will be very interesting to me to see how the tarnished HP brand can be rescued.

P.P.S. Just to show that I am full of contradictions, I want to tell you that I am very much aware of some of the points made by the insightful Naomi Klein in her book “No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies” . I agree with some of Naomi’s points but I also totally disagree with her at times.


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