Bob Hoffman

#361: Ad Contrarian Bob Hoffman on Brand Storytelling

#361: Ad Contrarian Bob Hoffman on Brand Storytelling

Ask 100 marketing consultants how to build a successful advertising and they will give you one thousand ways to do it. But today’s guest suggests that branding success comes down to one thing: fame. He’ll even give you three ways to achieve the fame for your brand you seek. 

Bob Hoffman is a best-selling author, speaker and advisor and one of the most sought-after international speakers on advertising and marketing.

Bob has made a second career calling B.S. on the ad industry’s rush to digital mediocrity. As a grizzled veteran of the advertising front lines, Bob Hoffman has written five books about advertising, each of which has been an Amazon #1 seller. He has graced the stages in 24 countries sharing his own lovably caustic insights on the advertising world. Hell, in 2021 he braved COVID to speak to members of the British and European Parliaments.

Before leaving the advertising business, Bob was the chief executive of two independent ad agencies and the US operation of an international agency.

Business Insider named Bob’s blog, The Ad Contrarian, one of the world’s most influential marketing and advertising blogs. His commentary has appeared in the BBC World Service, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, MSNBC, The Financial Times, New Zealand Public Broadcasting, Fox News, Forbes, Canadian Public Broadcasting, and many other news outlets throughout the world.

One of his books, BadMen: How Advertising Went From A Minor Annoyance To A Major Menace exposed many of the dangerous privacy abuse practices that have gone on to make international headlines. It was selected “Best of Marketing 2017”.

Join us as Bob discusses the few highs and dastardly lows of the advertising industry and the power of brand storytelling in this entertaining conversation.


Discussed in this episode:

  • Why Bob believes the programmatic ad ecosystem is corrupt and inefficient
  • How your advertising can buy you into fame
  • Why brands aren’t nearly as important to consumers as Marketers would like them to be
  • The limits of brand building when it comes to social media
  • The problem of ageism in today’s advertising and why it matters
  • Why successful stories begin with those that aren’t self-serving
  • Bob’s best tips on how to become a brilliant storyteller


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