John Paulo Cardoso

About John Paulo Cardoso

John Paulo believes that true design thinking brings meaning to the mass of needs, wants, ideas and perceptions, creating brand. ...

Posts by John Paulo Cardoso:

Despite the Recent Headlines: Offer Still Outranks Price

Branding Insights

One of a series by John Paulo Cardoso, Spyder Works Chief Creative Officer & Founder


The big box retailers are singing the Amazon blues on a daily basis. They say that they can’t compete with Amazon’s model and the lower prices for commodities that it offers. While price is always important, I believe that the real issue is that their stores and brands just aren’t offering anything unique to engage customers.

Unless, of course, you are the retailer Loblaws. Currently, their President’s Choice (PC) brand is third on the Ipsos Reid list of Most Influential Brands in Canada…that’s 33 spots ahead of Loblaw’s itself.

The PC phenomenon speaks to the consumer’s relationship with a brand and its promise, versus that of a commodity. It also demonstrates that the power of the brand and branding can greatly outweigh the distribution channel and price.

It also explains why Loblaws calls PC the brand “worth switching supermarkets for”.

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“Kraft Singles” out its Snack Division

Branding Insights
One of a series by John Paulo Cardoso, Spyder Works Chief Creative Officer & Founder


There are no red flags with Kraft’s new name change. On Aug. 4, 2011, Kraft Foods Inc. (NYSE:KFT) announced plans to divide and create two independent public companies: a high-growth global snacks business and a high-margin North American grocery business. And now on March 21, 2012 they announced its plans for its snack food corporate name as Mondelez International, Inc.

As their press release describes it, “‘Mondelez’ (pronounced mohn-dah-LEEZ’) is a newly coined word that evokes the idea of “delicious world.” “Monde” derives from the Latin word for “world,” and “delez” is a fanciful expression of “delicious.” In addition, “International” captures the global nature of the business.”

What this demonstrates is that the company truly understands the strength of its brands and how they have built a relationship with customers. And now they are using this knowledge to manage the branding of its new independent company to leverage the platform “make today delicious.” The move to invent a new word and taking the time to let everyone know the phonetic spelling is the right thing to do for a multinational conglomerate rather than trying to leverage one of its current brand names. As the Chairman and CEO Irene Rosenfeld has said regarding the new global snacks company, “we wanted to find a new name that could serve as an umbrella for our iconic brands, reinforce the truly global nature of this business and build on our higher purpose – to ‘make today delicious.’ Mondelez perfectly captures the idea of a ‘delicious world’ and will serve as a solid foundation for the strong relationships.” Kraft Foods Inc. brands know how to build relationships with its customers and now it’s applying it to the market and investors.

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The trail of clown-faced shopping bags

Branding Insights
One of a series by John Paulo Cardoso, Spyder Works Chief Creative Officer & Founder


As a young boy and a new comer to Canada living south of Mirvish Village, I remember following the trail of shoppers coming down Markham Street with their clown faced shopping bags, and was lead to the ultimate Toronto shopping experience – Honest Ed’s. Honest Ed’s featured value priced products and merchandize in a kitschy and nostalgic circus theme with a huge sign encompassing an entire city block made up of about 23,000 light bulbs and catchy slogans such as, “Come in and get lost!” and “Only the floors are crooked!” The inside of the store reminds us of a time before the giant big-box stores moved in, with its vintage bargain-basement type feel. The retailer gained fame for its marketing stunts, including loss leader specials, free turkey giveaways before holidays and extravagant yearly street parties for founder, Ed Mirvish’s, birthday.

After 63 years, Honest Ed’s is more than a store; it’s a well established and successful brand. Its architecture brings together vision, voice and benefits that together provide the inspiration and personality of a lasting brand. That is why, year’s later, Honest Ed’s remains memorable, instantly recognizable and has an emotional community-based appeal and relevance.

Successful brands are unique and beyond compare; they are instantly recognizable and build an emotional connection with their customers. A great brand should be distinct, exude personality and resonate loudly with a lucrative set of customers. Simply put, brand is the personification of your product or service, enabling customers to engage and build a relationship with it.

Are your customers still following a trail back to you decades later? If not, make 2012 your first step in building a lasting brand experience to delight your customers.

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