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Great Brand Stories: Innocent : Building a Brand from Nothing But Fruit [Paperback]

John Simmons
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)

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Paperback, 25 Jan 2007 --  

Book Description

25 Jan 2007 1905736045 978-1905736041
Innocent Drinks is a business phenomenon of the last decade. Founded in 1998 by three college friends, Innocent has grown at an amazing rate to become the UK’s fastest growing food and drink business in 2005. Even more impressive has been the growth of its brand legend. Innocent is one of those brands that everyone in the marketing world refers to with awe, affection and sometimes envy.
This book tells the story of Innocent’s rise and examines what has made it a brand that people observe, love and (increasingly) imitate. Through privileged access to the founders and others closely involved in the company, John Simmons will explore the road travelled by the Innocent cow vans, taking in the twists and turns, ups and downs along the way. Not only does Innocent make fantastic smoothie drinks, but it is a brand now known for its love of storytelling, humour and an honest approach to business.


Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Cyan Books (25 Jan 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1905736045
  • ISBN-13: 978-1905736041
  • Product Dimensions: 19.4 x 13 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 964,870 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I'm a writer primarily in the world of brands and business, with a particular focus on language ("How do brands communicate if they don't use words?"). My books have helped to make words a central issue of branding, from We, me, them & it through to Room 121. I also write fiction (The angel of the stories) and bring creative writing techniques to my training work as part of the Dark Angels programme. I'm a founder director of 26, the national writers' collective, and an honorary fellow of University College Falmouth. I blog regularly at www.26fruits.co.uk/blog


Product Description

About the Author

John Simmons is a brands expert who was previously a director at Interbrand, the world’s largest brands consultancy. He is the author of several books, including My Sister’s a Barista, Dark Angels, The Invisible Grail, and We, Me, Them & It (all published by Cyan).


Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book changed how I think about business 2 Feb 2007
Format:Paperback
You know when a book is so good that you have to keep putting it down and look out the window or something - just to try to contain your excitement?

I've read an unhealthy amount about branding, writing, marketing and management -and this relatively short (charmingly written) book, in one single story about one (amazing) company, has taught me more about branding, writing and how those two things can define and direct a business than all the rest put together.

John Simmons shows you that your brand and how you articulate your brand are one and the same thing. He shows you that writing can permeate every part and every stage of an organisation, so that everyone in your business (your colleagues, your customers, your suppliers, your investors, the media - everyone) will know what you do and who you are - and like you all the more for it.

Like his other books (We, Me, Them & It, The Invisible Grail, Dark Angels etc), this is about bringing honesty and humanity to work through your actions and through your words. It's about talking to and thinking about people in a way that not only genuinely reflects who you are, but helps shape and define who you are at the same time. The lesson I took away was this: Get the big picture through your brand, then really do sweat the details - from the way you write your company rule books (yes, Innocent do have them), to the way you answer the phone.

If you already know Innocent's 'tone of voice' (the words they use and the way they use them), you might imagine that while all this might work when you're writing a list of ingredients on the side of a smoothie, when you're dealing with things like supply chain logistics or complex marketing strategy, it all ends up sounding like a bunch of ill-thought-out, homespun truisms.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What Happens Next? 11 Aug 2007
By Mrs. R.
Format:Paperback
John Simmons writes with clarity and simplicity so that you almost feel as if you haven't read a business book; it was all too easy. Then again, you look back and realise you've learned much more about the business than if you'd struggled through a business report twice the length.
But now innocent have launched a break-away brand, This Water, and the Fruitstock Festival has turned into the Village Fair; we need an update.
What interests me is - according to John's description of their meticulous and lengthy planning process - that innocent must have been plotting their new developments while they were telling John about their recent history. These innocent chaps are wise indeed.
That's the problem with describing a moving target and the only reason I give the book a four and not a five. I need to know the thinking behind the This Water brand, why they moved on from Fruitstock. Bring out the update and I'll give it a 4.5.
But as a history of the brand's first few years, I'd recommend this for all your MBA case studies. Reading it as probably as close as you'll get to the interviewing the founders and Dan4.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring brand story 12 Dec 2008
Format:Paperback
This is a truly fascinating story about an extraordinary company. The book is easy to read and understand and very difficult to put down once you have started reading. Not only does it contain many valuable information about the company, it also gives a personal insight into their business operations and the personalities within it. It can become a little repetitive from time to time but this is majorly due to John Simmon's enthusiasm and passion about Innocent!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing but nothing but inspiring 27 April 2007
Format:Paperback
As one of those people who, like so many others, once walked into a copywriting workshop clutching an Innocent bottle in my hand as though it was an elixir of creative wonder, before reading it out to the class - I was rather excited (not to mention a smidgen envious) when I heard this book was being written.

Happily, it's a really entertaining read, which I devoured in only a few sittings. What's so nice is the way Simmons' own enthusiasm for the brand shines through, as he leads us on a guided tour through Fruit Towers and the story of Innocent; from its humble beginnings in the much-fabled land of `yes' and `no' bins, through to its humbler still existence today as Britain's fastest growing food and drinks company. From the dancing grass vans and the banana phone, to the fruitstock festival, and to the almost bloody-minded optimism which bounces through Innocent's whole approach to things... it's all there. And like the smoothies themselves, this book leaves you feeling uplifted and charged, fresh with the knowledge that simple goodness, optimism and honesty really can triumph above cynicism.

I can't remember the last time I read a non-fiction book so quickly, or came across one so `unputdownable'. Maybe it's partly because the content was so interesting, but it's also got to be down to the engaging openness of the author's style. As in all his other books, he writes with a simple charm that isn't a million miles away from the natural, funny tone running through Innocent's own voice.

As well as a comprehensive history of the brand and its people, there are many other lovely treats inside. There's a gallery of the best and most read-aloud labels over the years.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly inspiring book that proves successful business can be fun and...
This is unlike any other business book I have read. In my opinion it's greatest strength is simply telling the story of Innocent from its inception to its grand status today, which... Read more
Published 24 months ago by stotes99
4.0 out of 5 stars Innocent as told by John Simmons
Even though Innocent does not exist in Australia I could still identify with the story as I like buying and making juices and smoothies.
Published on 17 Jan 2012 by Melissa D. Brown
5.0 out of 5 stars a company that is truly inspiring...
innocent has taken the world by storm. fact! if anyone is thinking of starting a business, or wants some inspiration for creating or migrating to a brand identity then this should... Read more
Published on 14 Sep 2011 by Gcrikey
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Business Journey Book
I loved reading this book! Simple, straightforward, fun - great insight in to how an incredible brand was created!! 10/10
Published on 18 July 2010 by S. Seal
4.0 out of 5 stars good book..
I bought this book bcoz we need to write a report on Innocent. and this is a really good book to show the company. Read more
Published on 21 Mar 2009 by X. LIN
3.0 out of 5 stars Over Innocent
Excellent products - both smoothies and This Water. Undoubtedly sincere company and highly original approach. Read more
Published on 24 Feb 2009 by Adrenalin Streams
4.0 out of 5 stars Great fun- tasty like the drinks
How one idea, three guys, a shed load of fruit and endless energy created on of the most innovative, and healthiest companies in the UK. Read more
Published on 17 Dec 2007 by Peter Shield
5.0 out of 5 stars Plain speaking
As the inventor of the concept of 'tone of voice' there are few people better qualified to tell Innocent's story than John Simmons. Read more
Published on 30 Jan 2007 by Jamie Jauncey
5.0 out of 5 stars A song of experience
Innocent is a great brand - one that others should maybe try to learn from rather than copy. And this is a great book because, by way of a deceptively simple means of storytelling,... Read more
Published on 22 Jan 2007 by Stuart Delves
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