Professor Americus Reed II is the Whitney M. Young, Jr. Professor of Marketing at the Wharton School. He brings 25 years of research, teaching and consulting experience in leveraging deep social psychological analysis on how the topic of “Identity” and the complexity of how a person, organization, brand, or service creates self-expression and how this interfaces with various domains of business (Accelerating Growth, Creating True Loyalty, Work Identity and Organizational Culture and Calling, Persuasion and consumer targeting, and Brand Crisis).
As a part-time entrepreneur and full-time fitness enthusiast, Professor Americus Reed co-founded Persona Partners, a consulting firm that focuses on strategies to create “Identity Loyalty”. He has consulted with such companies as Americhoice, The Philadelphia Eagles, The Department of Education, Vistakon (a Johnson and Johnson co.), NIKE, the American College of Physicians and others related to the marketing and development of products associated with health and fitness.
An avid musician and athlete, he is a tireless educator with infinite energy. Drawing upon the superpowers of both right brain left brain, Americus relentlessly motivates, inspires and engages his audiences with humor, wit, and creativity, but importantly infused with science, data and evidence.
He has authored more than 50 articles, book chapters and cases on the topic. He also has been featured on CNN, CNBC, Forbes, Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, New York Times, NPR, the Hidden Brain Podcast, and Knowledge at Wharton.
Reed hosts a podcast called Marketing Matters, which airs live on Wednesdays on Wharton’s Sirius XM Channel 132 Business Radio. He teaches customer analysis, branding, and consumer psychology to undergraduate, graduate, doctoral, and executive students.
Products, brands, services, and organizations spend years and tons of money building their brands. However, in the world of social media, every consumer has a supercomputer in their pocket called a cell phone and can become an instant “consumer vigilante” – and can essentially “undo” all of your hard work of building up your brand equity by moral outrage and Twitter storms that can go around the world before you wake up for your morning coffee. In this talk, Americus Reed describes the principles of brand crisis response. He takes the audience through the key steps and plans that need to be in place – including how, when, and where to apologize, what to say, how to validate concerns, how to show action in the right way, and how to control your narrative. In this extremely engaging conversation, Reed describes case studies and key research that point to the importance of being savvy enough to understand that the Chinese symbol for “crisis” is made up of two ideas: danger and opportunity.
Modern Techniques of Persuasion
In this talk, Americus Reed takes the audience through decades of social psychological research to understand the key principles of persuasion. He describes what they are and how to leverage them if you are a product, brand, service, or organization. Persuasion is often instantly thought of as manipulative. It isn’t. Everything we do as human organisms is meant to persuade others to consider and accept our ideas, buy our products, contribute to our movements, etc. In this highly engaging and exciting conversation, Reed describes key ideas about how to persuade, and through both examples and science and data, unpacks the power of persuasion and when it works and when it does not.
Work Identity and Finding your Calling, Organizational Culture Hacks
Most people lament having to do “a job.” Very few can tap into finding their true “calling.” In this talk, Americus Reed describes research in the areas of organizational culture and how companies can better help employees connect with their corporate values. Americus describes his own most recent research on effort, self-reflection, appraisal, and fusion—four areas that create the conduit for employees to be all they can be. How can a company build its brand from within first, making sure that those who work within the building have alignment with the mission and the values of the company? Reed takes the audience step by step through the psychological processes of how calling works, and how organizations can foster and build it over time. People will spend more than half their lives working, so figuring how to best create an environment of personal growth is key.
Understanding How to Create True Loyalty
In this talk, Americus Reed discusses the concept of “Identity Loyalty” and describes how it relates to creating a deeply emotional and lifelong connection with a customer. Identity loyalty is when a product, brand, service, or organization become internalized as part of who you are. In this talk, Reed describes how to create identity loyalty from scratch. How to monitor and nurture it over time and how to make sure that the brand can through word of mouth and advocacy, create a community of fierce loyalists who will protect the brand, defend it and do its marketing for free. The concept of Identity Loyalty is a powerful tool to utilize the psychology of affiliation, tribalism, and belonging to create a connection that becomes virtually impossible to sever. Reed describes this process, which is relevant to Fortune 500 companies, startups, services, and business-to-business relationships.
How Brands Accelerate Growth and Create Strong Business
In this talk, Americus Reed discusses how the power of the brand can become a force for accelerating and creating a strong business. Drawing upon decades of research and also examples from his industry experience, he takes the audience through the steps in which a product, brand, service, organization, or even a person can create an “asset” that is the value of its brand. The brand then becomes an insular device that can protect against competition and market forces. Reed describes the psychological underpinnings of truly powerful and effective branding and unpacks how creating a brand becomes the singular most important aspect a company should be focused on to ensure its existence. He also describes situations in which the brand must change to address new markets and to ensure that it remains relevant.
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