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How Culture Influences Marketing with Marcus Collins, Wieden+Kennedy

Reading Time: 3 minutes


“No lever influences people more consistently than culture.”

Marcus Collins is the author behind a new book that I’m absolutely obsessed with, called For the Culture, and he’s also the Chief Strategy Officer at Wieden+Kennedy, a global advertising agency best known for their work with mega brands like Nike and Budweiser.

We’re digging into all things culture today – starting with the premise of understanding culture and its influence on marketing, shared beliefs, the “identity marks” of branding, and how consumption becomes a proxy for culture.

This conversation is SO good and I can’t wait for you to tune in.

Sneak Peek:

In This Episode:

  • How Budweiser cemented themselves as a cultural product through their marketing communications and commercials
  • Patagonia’s conviction and beliefs that have led to their ultimate success, plus, hear about one of their infamous Black Friday campaigns
  • Why our purchase of branded products tells the world who we are and translates to finding community 
  • How Nike put a stake in the ground around a cultural moment, causing a 6 billion dollar market increase for their brand after it happened (!)
  • Marcus breaks down a beautiful and simple framework – get ready to write this down and iterate on it
  • The tremendous amount of empathy and curiosity that are required to “find your people”

Marcus’s Ask

Marcus shares that “culture moves forward through our discourse, through our conversations, through the talking that we do, whether it’s in person or social networking platforms, or a combination of the two. It’s through these conversations that we’re able to collectively make meaning. 

If you heard something that resonated with you today, check out his book, For the Culture: The Power Behind What We Buy, What We Do, and Who We Want to Be, and tell somebody else about it.

Notable Quotes from Marcus

“Ultimately we just want to feel connected. We want to feel like people see us, we want to feel seen, and we want to feel heard, and we feel seen and we feel heard when we’re a part of a greater collective. And if brands can tap into that, if brands are able to activate those covalent bonds that connect us all together, realizing that culture is the governing operating system of those communities, it’s the ultimate cheat code. And the better we can leverage it.”

“There’s no force more influential than culture and that framework dictates almost all the decisions that we make, whether we’re conscious of them or not. And we as leaders, as marketers, as managers, activists, politicians, as clergy, even as parents, the more that we understand this, the more likely we are to harness its power to get people to adopt behavior.”

Resources & Links

What inspires website visitors to invest in your mission? Are you providing donors with a desirable online journey that keeps them coming back? Join my virtual session at the DonorPerfect Community Conference. I’ll see you on June 6th and 7th! 

Applications for my Monthly Giving Mastermind program are now open. If you have been wanting to start a monthly giving program but haven’t had the time or the team to make it happen, this is for you. We start in July, so apply now!

Connect with Marcus on his website and on all the social media platforms at @marctothec. Be sure to check out his new book, For the Culture: The Power Behind What We Buy, What We Do, and Who We Want to Be. You can also learn more about his agency, Wieden+Kennedy.

Marcus recently read Return of the Artisan by Grant McCracken, and enjoys the podcasts Questlove Supreme and Higher Learning with Van Lathan and Rachel Lindsay. 

Want to make Missions to Movements even better? Take a screenshot of this episode and share it on Instagram. Be sure to tag @positivequation so I can connect with you.

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