Father Daughter Marketing Duel at Stanford

This week, a friend remarked that our dinner table must host some unique and lively conversations. But not because Jennifer and I are married co-authors, but rather for the unique father-daughter professorial legacy that Jennifer and her Dad bring, er, to the table.You see, the friend is a fellow marketer and entrepreneur. Both marketing and entrepreneurship occupy multiple seats at our dinner table.

To my right, sits my wife and Dragonfly Effect partner Jennifer Aaker, distinguished Stanford marketing and behavioral psychology researcher.

David Aaker and Jennifer Aaker at Berkeley Haas School of Business

We are frequently honored to have her Dad, Dave, join us at the head of the table. David Aaker, a Berkeley Haas School professor emeritus is the author of countless books including Building Strong Brands, Brand Relevance and Brand Portfolio Strategy. Though he’d never say it himself, he’s the clear academic father of modern Brand Strategy.

When I can get a word in edgewise (and it is a challenge) I contribute what academics refer to (with an occasional lip-curl) as a “practitioner” point of view from my work at Intel, Dolby and a score of startups.

We have not taken to recording the dinners yet, so I can’t quite share the actual experience. Among other things, we’re waiting for such a time when our kids’ table manners catch up with HD videography. Until the events are accurately documented, I will allow my friend to believe it is akin to the Algonquin Round Table (at least to those who live and breathe marketing and branding). The interaction is, however, unique and while it’s not over a table, you can get a good idea of the banter that takes place in this Stanford lecture series video.

A sustained toast to all the fathers out there, may they all inspire greatness, humor and humility in their kids the way Jennifer’s Dad Dave has.


[Photo courtesy of Flickr photographer Global X]