Exporting Our Brand Expertise to China

(c) Fujian Peak Group Co. LTD. and The National Basketball AssociationA few years ago, I was attending an NBA Basketball game when one of those rotating courtside advertisements caught my eye: PEAK: I CAN PLAY.

I had no idea of who PEAK was at the time. (It’s a Chinese footwear company.) But once I learned, all I could think about is, “How are these guys ever going to compete with Nike?”

Especially with the limp-wristed tagline, “I can play.”

Craig Simons at Newsweek just wrote a great piece about the branding challenge that Chinese companies have, and its much bigger than just selling shoes. An excerpt (sorry Newsweek):

“China is famous as the factory to the world, but even its best companies enjoy little if any fame. That paradox has become a vexing problem for China’s leaders. The nation is now too rich to continue growing at a double-digit pace by simply putting more peasants to work in factories, and then underselling its Western, Japanese, and South Korean competition.”

The article is a must-read for anyone in the branding business. Maybe we should all stop competing for the same projects in the U.S. and start exporting our expertise to China.