How do GOOD brands make it to GREAT brands?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010 9:33Posted by: Coree Francisco
Posted in category Business, Featured

Part One: Burton Snowboards

If you have not read the book Good to Great I would highly recommend it.  When I was working at Mars Hill Group I was recommended it, among about 8 others, and I still make references back to that book, which I have to say was very easy to read.

There comes a time that every company needs to decide how they are going to be part of that next level or hopefully hold on to where they are and pray they make it. How can they grow a better and bigger office of GREAT people and GREAT clients = GREAT money! What do you have to do to be that wonderful that you don’t fall to the side of your competitors and outlast even your CFO’s expectations?

Simple. Be open, be innovative and take example of others success that have done it to learn from them. Bring in good people, but KNOW what they are going to do with the great people before bringing them on. Trying to fit someone who is great where you are not sure how to utilize him or her or if you are not ready will easily backfire, and I know, it just happened to me.

To help keep this blog short I am going to over the next couple of weeks discuss three separate brands and how they have done so well.

Burton Snowboards – Started back in year 1977 when snowboarding was just a dream. They have now grown into a multi-billion dollar company sponsoring gold medal athletes like Shaun White and Kelly Clark.

What does Burton do to make them so great? Well Jake (Burton) for one he and Dimitrije Milovich along with Tom Sims (founder of Sims Snowboards), Chuck Barfoot (founder of Barfoot Snowboards) and Mike Olson (founder of Gnu Snowboards) developed what we all know as the board design and then sport of snowboarding.


What really made Burton Snowboards stand out great was the consistent development of innovative products? I believe Burton has changed the way we view clothing today, and all clothing period. They combine technology and pure riding advancements into the development of gear both soft and hard goods.

Jake obviously knows how to market, and market to the masses. This is the single most important trait, because without it Burton Snowboards would not be where it is today.


Using Gortex as part of their outerwear was brilliant, as was the EST bindings. The technology extends of course to their snowboards, for men, women and kids. So no not any one snowboard will do, what you are going to do on the snowboard is what matters and Burton has a board for that.

Did I mention lifetime warranty? Not on all Burton gear, but on the stuff that is on the higher end of their line because they believe in their products. So in 5 years that zipper breaks, well send the pants over to Burton and get a new pair.


Every year the Burton website gets a ‘refresh’ growing with the content, the times and the wants of the snowboard community. Definitely a great place to work…maybe they will open up a web/design shop in Canada for all us die hard creative people here to work…


If you ever thought snowboarding was a sport for ‘punks’ think again. It is a high class innovative sport, and I could bet there has not been any ‘ski’ company out there to make the type of innovative advancements like Burton has nor will they ever be able to keep up to them.

Burton Website:

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