The creation of fast acting, upwardly accelerating, new world finding brands. The brand strategy that forces every ounce of growth out of the brand and then some more and right away. This is Rocket Branding.


 My favorite question on my weekly Chicago radio show is what is the one thing today that separates success from failure, winners from losers?

Here are quotes from three recent guests who work across a broad cross section of companies and industries.

  “Putting your head down and getting your work done. It’s all about execution.”

The key point Kristin Barrett VP Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center makes when seeing what creates success with her 300 high value start-ups at the 1871 incubator.

  “ When there is something in front of you that you can do, do it. Execute and learn”

Advice Kent Gladish, Senior Marketing and Sales Director Technology and Manufacturing Alignment Association provides when counseling his the 1,000-member organization on moving ahead and being successful.

“Its one thing to have a great idea but without a strong bias to action and execution the idea is typically under-served and unrealized

Observations from Bruno Gruaz a senior executive and Guest Expert Host on the show who counsels company owners on sustainable growth and prosperity.

Get the point? It ‘s all about getting it done. Executing. Making it happen.

Why is this? Are we not in a new world of digital productivity capabilities that enable us to get connected, get information and get action anywhere in the world, any time of the day?

So how has not getting it done, become such a factor?

I’m actually not surprised at this. In working across a wide range of people, industries and generations I see a new syndrome emerging, which I call the ‘Comfort Tunnel’.

Bit obtuse yes, but at least for me it attempts to describe the way some people tend to work today. It is very easy to spend a ton of time on-line sitting at a computer, connecting, conversing, scheduling. It is engaging, comfortable and seemingly ‘busy’ work.  Getting a little bored? It’s easy to jump on Twitter or check into Facebook or play with your calendar.

The next thing you know the day is gone. This is a comfortable, narrow existence, which tends to perpetuate work with little to show for it. You feel like you are working but are things really getting done?

So what is the answer? How do you get more done?

Again my answer is simple. Successful execution is all about a proper plan that is focusing on growth and simplicity…as often said…if you don’t know where you are going, you will never get there.

Focusing on a 3-5 year growth plan gives you a clear way to organize your plan and actions. If actions or decisions you make do not contribute directly to the growth plan at any point, then don’t do it.

And then, if the actions aren’t simple and instantly relevant in today’s high ADD and no time world, trust me they won’t work.

And the good news is that if you adopt this approach then you can still be in a ‘comfort tunnel’ but just much more productive.

For more about how to create a successful and simple plan see or email






Not all start-ups are equal.

Some rocket. They attract funding, rise fast, and have a good grasp on profits and future growth.

I call them SMART UPS.  

While others, with arguably as good a chance, tend to stall on the launch pad and never really get off the ground.

They remain plain old START UPS.

What distinguishes a SMART UP?

Well as the name implies they tend to make smarter decisions. Not always earthshattering or mind-boggling decisions but certainly smart ones.

Smarter decisions especially when it comes to what matters…the three F’s. Funding, Focus and Fuel.

Funding goes to a start up that has a focused growth plan and the marketing fuel to make it happen.

Unfortunately many start-ups are big on explaining their unique product or service and painting a glorious picture of the opportunity … just watch Shark Tank.

The smart ones, the Smart-Ups, however also produce a very clear plan on how they are going to market themselves.

Investors are not stupid. They can understand the ‘size of the prize ‘ so to speak but if they do not see that well thought out plan on how the marketing funds will be deployed then they are very reluctant to participate.   Strip it all away and investors these days, quite simply, want to know why the offering is unique and appealing, what the company or brand message is and how the marketing plan will deliver a high and sustaining ROI.

We proffered this on my new radio show The MAD ROCKET Business Show and the phone lines and email lit up.

So my co-host (Mark Imperial) and I created the MAD ROCKET process for converting Start Ups to SMART UPS by helping:

1. Define the growth plan that will dictate the focused initiatives

2. Create the emotional brand positioning and messaging that will drive immediate acceptance

3.  Develop the detailed marketing plan that will ensure the right actions and ROI.  

The principles and techniques behind this MAD ROCKET end-to-end system utilizes the proprietary Rocket Branding℠ process that has already helped launch over 300 SMART UPS around the world including some in the billion dollar stratosphere and the some of the most successful new products in the CPG, Technology and Health, Fashion sectors in history with names like, NutraSweet, Splenda, Celebrex and Old Spice (Yes even this dusty old name needed a new start up).

Please feel free to contact us at or for further information on MAD ROCKET and how we can help you become a soaring SMART UP.

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