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Best New Thinking Winner 2010

After Image by John Grant

New Title published May 7th 2002

Buy the book here or read a review

After Image John Grant 2002 Harper Collins Click on the title and you can order the book from Amazon.

    • Several exclusives this month. Firstly you get to read one of the first reviews of this new book keenly awaited since John Grant wrote New Marketing Manifesto which has been a steady seller from this website. Click here to read the review.


  • But how come I hear you asking? Well John has been a fan of the website for a year now and was keen to use to the site to promote the new book to the planning community. You probably already know that all book sales through this website go towards a drinks tab that everyone is invited to come and drink twice a year in Soho. Well the plan is to sell a truckload of copies of After Image with a view to stoking up the drinks tab to hitherto undreamt of and giddy levels. So that’s the plan!

Read the free chapter

  • Second exclusive we have permission to feature a whole chapter of the new book in pdf format on the site so if you have an Acrobat reader you can preview the book without parting with any cash. To view or download the free chapter click on the pdf icon.

Listen to the John Grant Interview

  • Exclusive no 3. The following extracts come from an interview I conducted with John Grant on May 9th at the launch party for After Image. Click on the icons to hear the mp3 files play back.

    play How does After Image follow on from the New Marketing Manifesto? (380K)

    play Why is lifelong learning the key to the future? (885K)

    play What’s wrong with brand image marketing? (684K)

    play How youth culture has changed (601K)

    play What is his new model for building brands? (1.8Mb)

    play Why is media content now so much more important than advertising? (1.2Mb)

    play What is the future of advertising? (2Mb)

    play What type of agency is best designed for this future world? (1.2Mb)

    play Kim Wilde ….(800K)

Review of After Image

John Grant’s first book The New Marketing Manifesto was so packed with original thinking that you’d be forgiven for wondering whether he would update the case studies and say the same thing all over again. Lots of authors do. But in After Image he has gone on to new ground. In the current flux in the communications business with so much that is uncertain this book will delight and infuriate in equal measure.

Firstly Grant asserts that if the latter part of the 20th century was about materialism and aspiration – what gave brand imagery it’s power, western societies have switched into full learning mode for the majority of the population. Brands have to play a fundamentally different role. This has changed the balance of power firmly away from ad spots towards programming and media that is increasingly open for marketers to place their own content.

The goal for marketers now is create ideas with which their brands can be associated. Ownership of this kind is far more valuable than the personalities which brands were carefully constructed from using insights into brand users and the aspirations of brand users. Concepts have a life of their own where brand imagery needed to be constantly promoted and tended.

Grant introduces a new branding model which draws on the latest research in neuroscience to show how mental propositions and sensory maps can be harness to take ownership of ideas. Quite a lot of the book is spent showing how to deploy this new branding model.

For me the compelling chapters are those on the different types of media: knowledge/reality/dialogue/memetic/story/reputation and how these should be used to trigger shifts in conceptual thinking.

You might think that this is a polemic against advertising from a former ad planner who has seen the light. Far from it – if there is a flaw in the book it is that it doesn’t really explain what the new role for advertising is in a learning society – image is just irrelevant. Where ad agencies will want to quibble is whether controlling media content will ever be as effective as advertising. Even if marketers are sitting in the editorial chair cheque book in hand.

PR and new media agencies and some of the new wave media independents will fall on this book with unbridled enthusiasm but ad agencies will want to argue about the writing on the wall. Either way if you enjoyed The New Marketing Manifesto then you’ll want to get your hands on Episode 2. Believe me it isn’t a repeat.

Click here to order your own copy of After Image.

Click here to order your own copy of the New Marketing Manifesto.

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