Al Ries: Adman Who Sought a Portal Into Consumers’ Brains

From a New York Times obit by Richard Sandomir headlined “Al Ries, Adman Who Sought a Portal Into Consumers’ Brains, Dies at 95”:

Al Ries, an influential marketing strategist who in the 1970s and ’80s popularized “positioning,” in which companies try to defeat their rivals by embedding hard-to-forget words in consumers’ minds, died at his home in Atlanta.

Mr. Ries and his partner, Jack Trout, at Trout & Ries, a Manhattan firm, preached to their clients that creative advertising wasn’t enough to persuade consumers to buy their products. But smart positioning, they said, would — as Volvo did with “safety,” Crest did with “cavities” and FedEx did with “overnight,” slicing through the growing clutter of advertising messages from print, TV and radio.