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The Fortune Cookie Principle: The 20 Keys to a Great Brand Story and Why Your Business Needs One

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"This should be the next book you read. Urgent, leveraged and useful, it will change your business like nothing else." SETH GODIN —Author The Icarus Deception It's not how good you are. It's how well you tell your story. Big corporations might have huge marketing and advertising budgets but you’ve got a story. Your brand story isn't just what you tell people. It's what they "This should be the next book you read. Urgent, leveraged and useful, it will change your business like nothing else." SETH GODIN —Author The Icarus Deception It's not how good you are. It's how well you tell your story. Big corporations might have huge marketing and advertising budgets but you’ve got a story. Your brand story isn't just what you tell people. It's what they believe about you based on the signals your brand sends. The Fortune Cookie Principle is a brand building framework and communication strategy consisting of 20 keys that enable you to begin telling your brand’s story from the inside out. It’s the foundation upon which you can differentiate your brand and make emotional connections with the kind of clients and customers you want to serve. The most successful brands in the world don’t behave like commodities and neither should you. A great brand story will make you stand out, increase brand awareness, create customer loyalty and power profits. Isn't it time to gave your customers a story to tell? The Fortune Cookie Principle will show you how. ADVANCE PRAISE FOR THE FORTUNE COOKIE PRINCIPLE "It's so easy to overcomplicate what great brands and new businesses need to do to resonate with their consumers. The simple questions asked in this book help you to de-mystify that process. It encourages you to think beyond what you do to why you do it and why that matters to your customers. Had this been available when I was driving Sales and Marketing Capabilities in my past corporate life at Cadbury Schweppes, this would have been recommended reading. Now I'm an entrepreneur I simply apply these principles each and every day." Wendy Wilson Bett—Co-Founder Peter's Yard "Yes, you need a great product, but without a compelling story, success is improbable. The 'Fortune Cookie Principle' is an easy-to-read guide that will help any marketer or business owner begin to ask the right questions about the stories they tell. Bernadette includes dozens of examples and questions to get your storytelling ship in the right order. Let's face it...telling compelling stories to attract and retain customers is not easy. Most brand marketers are not great storytellers. This book will give you a new perspective on your marketing, and help you move from talking about yourself to talking about things your customers actually care about. Then, and only then, will your marketing actually work in today's consumer-led economy." Joe Pulizzi—Founder Content Marketing Institute "The wisdom in this book is better than any fortune. Read and apply!" Chris Guillebeau—Author $100 Startup “This book is an inspiration. Bernadette ignites real-world experience with a true passion for helping businesses move to the next level.” Mark Schaefer—Author Return on Influence "Full of inspiring stories about what makes businesses unique (and successful) in today's supersaturated markets." David Airey —Author Work For Money, Design For Love. “If you're someone who cares about why you do what you do and how you do it, this book is for you.” Tina Roth Eisenberg—Founder of Tattly


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"This should be the next book you read. Urgent, leveraged and useful, it will change your business like nothing else." SETH GODIN —Author The Icarus Deception It's not how good you are. It's how well you tell your story. Big corporations might have huge marketing and advertising budgets but you’ve got a story. Your brand story isn't just what you tell people. It's what they "This should be the next book you read. Urgent, leveraged and useful, it will change your business like nothing else." SETH GODIN —Author The Icarus Deception It's not how good you are. It's how well you tell your story. Big corporations might have huge marketing and advertising budgets but you’ve got a story. Your brand story isn't just what you tell people. It's what they believe about you based on the signals your brand sends. The Fortune Cookie Principle is a brand building framework and communication strategy consisting of 20 keys that enable you to begin telling your brand’s story from the inside out. It’s the foundation upon which you can differentiate your brand and make emotional connections with the kind of clients and customers you want to serve. The most successful brands in the world don’t behave like commodities and neither should you. A great brand story will make you stand out, increase brand awareness, create customer loyalty and power profits. Isn't it time to gave your customers a story to tell? The Fortune Cookie Principle will show you how. ADVANCE PRAISE FOR THE FORTUNE COOKIE PRINCIPLE "It's so easy to overcomplicate what great brands and new businesses need to do to resonate with their consumers. The simple questions asked in this book help you to de-mystify that process. It encourages you to think beyond what you do to why you do it and why that matters to your customers. Had this been available when I was driving Sales and Marketing Capabilities in my past corporate life at Cadbury Schweppes, this would have been recommended reading. Now I'm an entrepreneur I simply apply these principles each and every day." Wendy Wilson Bett—Co-Founder Peter's Yard "Yes, you need a great product, but without a compelling story, success is improbable. The 'Fortune Cookie Principle' is an easy-to-read guide that will help any marketer or business owner begin to ask the right questions about the stories they tell. Bernadette includes dozens of examples and questions to get your storytelling ship in the right order. Let's face it...telling compelling stories to attract and retain customers is not easy. Most brand marketers are not great storytellers. This book will give you a new perspective on your marketing, and help you move from talking about yourself to talking about things your customers actually care about. Then, and only then, will your marketing actually work in today's consumer-led economy." Joe Pulizzi—Founder Content Marketing Institute "The wisdom in this book is better than any fortune. Read and apply!" Chris Guillebeau—Author $100 Startup “This book is an inspiration. Bernadette ignites real-world experience with a true passion for helping businesses move to the next level.” Mark Schaefer—Author Return on Influence "Full of inspiring stories about what makes businesses unique (and successful) in today's supersaturated markets." David Airey —Author Work For Money, Design For Love. “If you're someone who cares about why you do what you do and how you do it, this book is for you.” Tina Roth Eisenberg—Founder of Tattly

30 review for The Fortune Cookie Principle: The 20 Keys to a Great Brand Story and Why Your Business Needs One

  1. 5 out of 5

    Brad Dunn

    I don't have a beef with this book really. I just feel like the writing doesn't go into why companies work enough to make it believable. I feel bad for saying that but its just how I feel. It's a little like looking at a busy Nando's and saying, they're busy because of some arbitrary fact. Like perhaps, the the staff smile. "The staff smile, therefore, Nando's is sucessful." Without really breaking down the business and understanding why it's really working, and providing evidence to support it, I don't have a beef with this book really. I just feel like the writing doesn't go into why companies work enough to make it believable. I feel bad for saying that but its just how I feel. It's a little like looking at a busy Nando's and saying, they're busy because of some arbitrary fact. Like perhaps, the the staff smile. "The staff smile, therefore, Nando's is sucessful." Without really breaking down the business and understanding why it's really working, and providing evidence to support it, its hard to understand what the contributing factors to success are. You need to get to the heart of this. I think from memory psychologists call this the 'Fundamental Attribution Error.' I feel like the observations in this book about success, or a good story of a brand, or a good company, aren't really contributing factors, but just one of many. Perhaps they matter. Perhaps they don't. But just observing them, and noting them down because they support your point, if they aren't contributing factors, I feel like the book can be a little misleading. The writing is crisp, and I suspect for people who don't read a lot of business books, this is probably a great read. It will feel positive to read, but I feel like for the most part, the book doesn't go deep enough into the stories of success, and will leave people will a false sense of importance on very minor points. Some matter. Some don't. But there isn't enough depth to work out which ones are which. Having said that, most of the example organisations in the book, are indeed, successful. So i'm not trying to talk smack about the companies in it, I just feel like the book makes a claim, then finds a minor point, and re-arranges the observations to further backup the point, without providing real evidence. Maybe it sounds like I'm splitting hairs, and I hate to review this book in comparison to another, but for sake of an alternative, I want to use Malcolm Gladwell to point something out. I find Gladwell will take a very minor thing, and go deep on it. Providing polarising views around the points, looking at evidence, finding support, looking at facts, counter arguments. Then, when your presented with an observation, you feel well informed. So, you feel like your opinion is justified. I feel like this would have helped. I would have loved to see, instead of Jiwa talking an inch deep and a mile wide on 8,000 different stories, why not just pick one? Why not just pick one story, and REALLY go deep on it. make the same claims, but give people real evidence, and perhaps, alternative views, and let people make up their own minds on if its a contributing factor. She's got great examples in here, I just feel like there wasn't enough done to make the evidence compelling. I'd love to see her tackle one very specific idea, and write a book about it.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Amir Jabbari

    Most companies fall into the trap of thinking that the product they are selling is confined to the physical aspect of the goods while it is the experience, lifestyle, or in other words the core value you are providing the market with that makes your customers tick

  3. 5 out of 5

    Morgan

    There are many better written and better formatted books that cover the topics Jiwa goes over. I was disappointed and pretty uninspired. I finished the book not remembering what "the fortune cookie principle" actually is, but I remember when I was at that part that it seemed like a stretch.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan Brooker

    To be honest, I'm still not sure that I totally understand or even agree with the title of the book. The author repeatedly mentioned how we buy a fortune cookie, but this may be a cultural difference since I believe she resides in Australia, because we certainly don't pay separately for a fortune cookie in America. Leaving the title aside (because it's not really that bad either way, I suppose), I thoroughly enjoyed this book! It's wild for me to imagine these days, but Jiwa offers in the beginni To be honest, I'm still not sure that I totally understand or even agree with the title of the book. The author repeatedly mentioned how we buy a fortune cookie, but this may be a cultural difference since I believe she resides in Australia, because we certainly don't pay separately for a fortune cookie in America. Leaving the title aside (because it's not really that bad either way, I suppose), I thoroughly enjoyed this book! It's wild for me to imagine these days, but Jiwa offers in the beginning a desire to help in a specific way, lays out what that way will look like, then actually delivers on it and ends at the very time the content has ended and not a moment longer. This is a small miracle for many modern books, especially business/leadership type ones. There were plenty of communicable concepts for me to use and relate to my situation. A healthy dose of examples were given simply as illustrations rather than "you need to believe this is true only because it happened for this one business I'm telling you about." And I strangely enough found the questions at the end of the chapter to be incredibly helpful! I don't often pay any attention to those types of things because they feel like a way to add a few more pages and don't seem as intentional as the content of the chapter, but not the case here! It felt like I had a coach who gave insight and then turned to me with poignant questions of "So how does that affect the way you see ___ or do ___." Quality book for anyone who wants to improve their business branding and story.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Zack Applewhite

    Eye opening from the very beginning “Marketers spend most of their time trying to sell the cookie, when they should really be trying to sell the fortune”. A good deal similar to “Start With Why” by Simon Sinek. A sort of mashup of business stories greatest hits as well as a few you might not have heard. Much more focused on the What and the “Why” rather than the “How”. While 80% of this will not be new for those who regularly read business and marketing books, there is still a valuable 20%. And it Eye opening from the very beginning “Marketers spend most of their time trying to sell the cookie, when they should really be trying to sell the fortune”. A good deal similar to “Start With Why” by Simon Sinek. A sort of mashup of business stories greatest hits as well as a few you might not have heard. Much more focused on the What and the “Why” rather than the “How”. While 80% of this will not be new for those who regularly read business and marketing books, there is still a valuable 20%. And it might be very valuable for those who are new to business and marketing literature. But they would be better off reading “David and Goliath” by Gladwell or “Start with Why” by Sinek.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Howard

    This was a good book at making marketing feeling accessible and practical to a small business or a solopreneur. She makes it relevant and gets the gears turning. It's about telling the story of your business and addressing how your customers feel.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Davezilla

    Required reading for marketers With a fluid, rapid style, and relevant case studies, Jiwa makes her case convincingly. If I were still teaching, this would be required reading for my students.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Edgar

    Good book about really deep thinking about your organization's brand. What universal problems are you addressing? Who stands to benefit from your solution? How are those problems otherwise solved? What if those problems aren't solved? How are you spreading the word? Etcetera. Recommend

  9. 4 out of 5

    Harmony T.

    A great introductory book on viewing branding as story telling and why it matters to all business owners. The exercises are helpful. This book is not a comprehensive branding book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Joshua

    Good. If you need to sell something read it We all need to sell something. The story is essential that makes up a large part of your brand. Jd

  11. 5 out of 5

    Barry Demp

    Bernadette provide big, creative and easy to apply ideas to enhance your marketing efforts. Very much worth the read.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Q-rie deBerk

    You've got to love Bernadette's writing

  13. 4 out of 5

    Derek Pankaew

    Pretty good book about branding & storytelling. Nothing is particularly mind blowing, but a good summary overall. It's an entertaining read, though I don't think anything was all that memorable. Pretty good book about branding & storytelling. Nothing is particularly mind blowing, but a good summary overall. It's an entertaining read, though I don't think anything was all that memorable.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Lawrence Namale

    Well, when I saw Seth Godin endorsing, I knew I was in for a treat. I wasn't. Nothing novel, nothing interesting. Normal.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan Addington

    I don't know that I'd read it front to back again, but it's a great short book on all that brands and stories are.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kirsty

    I liked it! I could relate to much of the writing angst and decisions about stepping away from the novel writing. Not sure I’d recommend it for non-writers though.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Marcelo Bahia

    A few cool examples and stories, but not much more than that. It might help you to have one or two new ideas for your business, but there are other books which are more research-backed and give you more bang for the buck on that front. I would suggest Blue Ocean Strategy: How To Create Uncontested Market Space And Make The Competition Irrelevant and Brainfluence: 100 Ways to Persuade and Convince Consumers with Neuromarketing, for example. Or maybe The Good Jobs Strategy: How the Smartest Compani A few cool examples and stories, but not much more than that. It might help you to have one or two new ideas for your business, but there are other books which are more research-backed and give you more bang for the buck on that front. I would suggest Blue Ocean Strategy: How To Create Uncontested Market Space And Make The Competition Irrelevant and Brainfluence: 100 Ways to Persuade and Convince Consumers with Neuromarketing, for example. Or maybe The Good Jobs Strategy: How the Smartest Companies Invest in Employees to Lower Costs and Boost Profits, which looks at similar issues from a treat-your-employee-well perspective and even has some examples that are also mentioned in Jiwa's book.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sue Cartwright

    An important book that looks at 'new marketing' at a time when people are easier to reach, but much harder to engage. Bernadette expands on the concept of 'real marketing' which needs to be built into what we do and why we do it to create a deeper impact, and leave a lasting impression that's 'as powerful as a smile.' Fantastic guidance on how to build a brand rather than selling a commodity, and the importance of telling stories that mean something to our customers - in our vision, values, produ An important book that looks at 'new marketing' at a time when people are easier to reach, but much harder to engage. Bernadette expands on the concept of 'real marketing' which needs to be built into what we do and why we do it to create a deeper impact, and leave a lasting impression that's 'as powerful as a smile.' Fantastic guidance on how to build a brand rather than selling a commodity, and the importance of telling stories that mean something to our customers - in our vision, values, products and services, people, delivery, content, design, actions, customer services and so on. Each section ends with 'Questions for you' that encourage us to consider how we can integrate real marketing into all aspects of our business. 'It's not how good you are; it's how well you tell your story' and how you change how customers feel about themselves.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Glenn O'Bannon

    Inspiring and thought-provoking I highly recommend this book to anyone who has a business, is starting a business, or who is dreaming about a business. The author relates through a myriad of examples how great companies, large and small, told the story of their brand. It's about how you need to find out what your story is and develop ways to get your story out. Most helpful are the questions at the end of each chapter. They will help you think properly about your story and how you might want to tel Inspiring and thought-provoking I highly recommend this book to anyone who has a business, is starting a business, or who is dreaming about a business. The author relates through a myriad of examples how great companies, large and small, told the story of their brand. It's about how you need to find out what your story is and develop ways to get your story out. Most helpful are the questions at the end of each chapter. They will help you think properly about your story and how you might want to tell it. I intend to use those questions to hone my own story about G-Men Productions. Then we are going to rebuild everything we have to tell that story. Because we are not telling our story yet and that is going to change.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Sara Mutchler

    Great book for anyone who has a business, is considering starting a business, or works with businesses in a marketing capacity. The author shares many examples of how companies, large and small, tell the story of their brand. She also explains how important it is to have a clear vision and story in an age when advertising is less about traditional "ads" and more about social media and what people share about you. I really loved this book, a very quick read with interesting examples. Not a ton of Great book for anyone who has a business, is considering starting a business, or works with businesses in a marketing capacity. The author shares many examples of how companies, large and small, tell the story of their brand. She also explains how important it is to have a clear vision and story in an age when advertising is less about traditional "ads" and more about social media and what people share about you. I really loved this book, a very quick read with interesting examples. Not a ton of details but that's the point--it's not the minute details that matter, it's how you make your customer feel.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Juan Castro

    The cookie is the product you sell. But what your customers are really after is the fortune, the feelings and emotions behind what your brand and products stands for. Is not marketing, is brand building though storytelling. Conceptualizing Storytelling as the synergy and momentum build in everything that touches your customer experience with your brand and the following stories of past customers that become ambassadors (or executioners) of your brand. Good read.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Brad Henderson

    I read this book because it had a high recommendation from Seth Godin. What you get out of this book will depend on what your objective is for reading it. If you want to learn proven strategies for building a brand and telling your story this is not the book for you, or me, which is why I only gave it 3 stars. If you want interesting examples of divergent paths brands took to build a personality you might find it more useful. Without the interesting ideas this book is a 1 or 2 star book.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sarat

    Truly brilliant book that simplifies marketing, brand and storytelling by using contemporary examples we can all associate with and understand. I love the questions at the end of each chapter which become a workbook to define your own brand story. Definitely one that has inspired some real action and results for us.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    This book doesn't say anything new. It's not revolutionary. What it is is well organized, digestible, and engaging. The chapters are short and to the point, with questions at the end of each case chapter for you to work through in your own regarding your business. I just finished the book and plan on going back through to answer the questions next.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    Anyone that has anything to do with a brand should read this. Especially people who have found themselves at the top of the org chart of a brand they didn't create. Your brands purpose isn't to make money, that's a result of telling your story. This book will help reorientate you back to why.

  26. 5 out of 5

    bryan s arnold

    Incredible Branding Stories This is how I describe this one. lots of takeaways from this book that really hit home for me in my upstart business. Definitely have to go back through it to make sure I'm implementing everything I've read. Great stuff here.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Snow Queen

    Like somebody had said, this book is a reminder of previously known theories rather than anything new. What's good is that it contains up-to-date cases and information. Not bad indeed, but not really eye-opening.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Helen

    Read it in one go on the plane. Will use it in the future as part of work on branding and marketing. The book is full of stories and questions one should ask while writing their own story. Easy to read and use

  29. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth Herrera

    Unique insights into the power of creating a brand The book was a pleasure to read, which is often unusual for a book on marketing. But the stories made it interesting and demonstrated that stories are the key to a great brand!

  30. 5 out of 5

    shane york

    For those of us who... Have a business or are thinking about starting on. This book takes an honest and ethical approach to running business. A truly refreshing read. Highly recommended.

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