Marc Gobé, the well-known marketing and branding expert, died Friday at his home in Manhattan. He was 68.
The cause was a brain tumor, said his daughter Gwenaëlle Gobé.
When he created his consultancy firm, Emotional Branding LLC, in December 2007, Gobé told WWD he was a believer in the “notion that half of a brand’s image stems from its visual identity.”
“I will help top companies understand the various parts of the design process and how to leverage it. There is a vast gap between top management in big companies, and the creative field and consumers,” said Gobé.
Emotional Branding’s first initiative was the launch of a Web site of the same name, a moniker that reprises Gobé’s well-known book, published in 2001. He also wrote another book called "Citizen Brand."
Over the years, Gobé — who was a champion of the role emotions played in the design and marketing of brands — maintained a portfolio of marketing clients that ranged from Coca-Cola and Gillette, to Brooks Brothers, Victoria’s Secret and Ann Taylor.
Gobé’s vision in the world of fashion also included retail design. Last January, he was awarded the Retail Design Legion of Honor by the Retail Design Institute.
The awards ceremony at the Times Center Stage at the New York Times Building in Manhattan pulled in 500 industry executives, where Gobé cited several retailers and their store and product designs as among his most memorable projects: the Ann Taylor and Express flagships in New York and the bottle design for the best-selling fragrance by Victoria’s Secret, Dream Angels Heavenly.
He also worked on film projects “This Space Available” and “King of the Line” with his daughter in 2013. Both were feature-length documentaries that explored how outdoor advertising as well as other mediums impacted people.
Gwenaëlle Gobé said her father had lost the ability to speak but continued to be active in the arts until his death.
“He had this courage and curiosity, and he always had a boy’s wonder about things....If he had to speak at his own funeral, he would have said that he always loved his work. He loved sharing his ideas for books, film and art, and that was very important to him. He always wanted to share his vision and the way he sees branding and design,” she said.
Gobé’s way of sharing included marketing and burnishing brand images through social media. He was fond of saying, “The essence of the Internet can be articulated around one word: sharing. Anything that goes on in social media is only interesting because it can be shared. It should be a mantra for any brand.”
In addition to Gwenaëlle, he is survived by his wife, Mariannick, and another daughter, Emilie.
Memorial services will be held 10 a.m. Thursday at the Church of the Blessed Sacrament in Manhattan. A celebration of his life will take place in La Baule, France, in February.
EXCLUSIVE: @tomford is opening its first-ever beauty store. The boutique, which opens November 20 in London’s Covent Gardens, was designed with the over-the-top glam Ford is known for. Read the full story on WWD.com, link in bio. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: Simon Wagner) #TomFordBeauty
New York-based DJ @harleyvnewton threw a party to celebrate the holiday collection of her dress and pajama line @hvn at the Ladurée Beverly Hills. It Girls @katebosworth, @rashidajones and more joined in on the fun, which included cocktails, croque monsieur sandwiches and a photo booth. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
For the holidays, @Burberry partnered with 20-year-old artist @blondeymccoy on a series of three outdoor murals in downtown Manhattan. The murals are McCoy’s interpretation of a Christmas eve party, the idea of charity and the spirit of family. His third mural, pictured here, is the most personal. The image depicts McCoy’s grandparents and father in London’s Trafalgar Square in the Seventies. “My work often features lots of sentimental objects.” #wwdeye
For spring 2018, designers applied bold colors and cartoonish motifs on everything from sneakers and belts to key chains. See all the top men’s accessories trends on WWD.com. #wwdtrends (📷: George Chinsee; Prop Styling by @rnasti; Market Editor: @luiscampuzano)
The @dior-sponsored @guggenheim international gala pre-party has a history of drawing cool-girl musical acts to serenade the crowd –– and last night was no exception. @haimtheband performed songs both new and old, and lured a star-studded audience with the likes of Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Mamoudou Athie and more. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
In a partnership between the @metopera and the @englishnationalopera, “Marnie” was born. The opera, with costumes sponsored by @mrporterlive, is an adaptation of the 1961 thriller by Winston Graham. Arianne Phillips, who created the costumes, is no rookie: She’s styled Madonna for her tours and created costumes for a myriad of films in the past. Read WWD’s interview with Phillips, where she talks about her inspiration for the opera’s costumes on WWD.com #wwdfashion
@barneysnyc took a different approach to their holiday windows this year. Instead of Christmas decor, Barneys tapped @thehaasbrothers to tell a story of positivity, gratitude and inclusivity via heartwarming silliness and humor. “It’s about kids and it’s about coming together and being family and loving each other,” said Simon Haas. #wwdfashion (📷: @joshuascottphoto)
Beauty influencer @kandeejohnson makes her foray into hair care with a collaboration with @ogx_beauty — making it the first time that OGX has teamed up for a product creation. The collab includes shampoos and conditioners in three scents. At 39 and a mom, Johnson is a different profile than the emerging social media stars, but is considered one of the pioneers of the digital beauty influencer world. Read WWD’s interview with her on wwd.com, including the strangest beauty product she’s ever tried #wwdbeauty