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Our publications

Unparalleled insight into the challenges brands face

At PHD we like to stay ahead of the game. That’s why we’re always thinking, collaborating and sharing knowledge about the future of the industry.

We’ve written a few books...

Overthrow II – 10 strategies from the new wave of challengers

Twenty years after the concept of the challenger brand was coined – and seven years after we first visited the challenger narrative in the original Overthrow – a new wave of challengers has been changing the way the categories around us think and behave. Financed by a new type of investor, harnessing emerging structural changes and new ways to build relationships with their consumers, they have generated an enormous energy and excitement in their marketing and business community.

Overthrow II explores the 10 different challenger strategies, or narratives, used most powerfully today, each of them embodied in interviews with incisive leaders who have used them to break through in their market. We look at the strategic principles that each follows, the media behaviours they practise, and the part that today’s big themes like technology, data, culture and creativity play.

What’s your challenger type? Take the challenger quiz to find out, and learn more about Overthrow II at Test.

Collaborating with leaders in their field and bringing new thinking to the industry


  • Merge | The closing gap between technology and us

The closing gap between technology and us

Over the next thirty years, technology will be more disruptive than ever before due to drastic hardware advances and AI breakthroughs. While developments like the disappearance of devices and emergence of virtual environments may sound like science fiction, our merge with technology virtually and biologically will happen sooner than you think.

With a foreword by futurist and author Ray Kurzweil, Merge investigates the five stages of our unification through exclusive interviews with inspirational business leaders, world renowned academics and pioneering researchers.

Identify what needs to be done today to prepare for a tomorrow when humanity and technology are inextricably linked.

Learn more

Find out more about the Merge.


  • Kevin Kelly, Wired co-founder, guest speaking with PHD at Cannes Lions

Where we are all heading

What plans would you put in place if you had the foresight to know where your business, industry, or life is heading?

At PHD, we believe that looking to the future can help us think differently about today. We need to escape the tendency to interpret forthcoming technology with current tools.

Co-founder of Wired magazine Kevin Kelly’s latest book ‘The Inevitable’ explores 12 tech trends that will shape our future. In ‘Predestination’ we further investigate eight of these developments, including virtual reality in the home, an on-demand economy and artificial intelligence embedded into everything.

By understanding and embracing these trends and the prospects they provide, we can arrange our relationships with technology for maximum benefit.

Learn more

Download Predestination | Where we are all heading

The Coming AI Revolution

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is here and getting smarter all the time and with the predicted rise of the sentient VPA making purchasing decisions for us, brands will have to adapt to marketing to algorithms instead of consumers.

Our exploration of AI saw us collaborate with Sir Tim Berners-Lee, founder of the World Wide Web, who shared his views on an AI-enabled future when he joined PHD at Cannes Lions.

In “Sentience: The Coming AI Revolution and the Implications for Marketing”, we address the incredible potential for marketers and what they can do now to prepare.


  • Sir Tim Berners-Lee guest speaking with PHD
  • Cannes Lions Festival

Mind Trip

  • Jason Silva guest speaking with PHD
  • Cannes Lions Festival

Propelling marketers into the future to help address the problems of today

At PHD, we believe that looking into the future can jolt us into thinking differently about today. Together with futurist and techno-philosopher Jason Silva – host of National Geographic channel’s Brain Games – we invited marketers to come on a Mind Trip and gaze a few decades into the future, to 40 or 50 years away, where things such as nanotech and biotech will be commonplace.


Learn more

Download our Mind Trip booklet

The future of work? Play!

7 billion hours by 1 billion gamers are what’s up for grabs in the Engagement Economy, according to game designer and author Jane McGonigal when she joined PHD at the Cannes Lions festival.
Game Change discusses how ‘gamification’ can be harnessed and applied as a business model for the future.
We liked the idea so much we built a game layer into PHD’s global collaboration platform, SOURCE, allowing employees to gamefully tackle daily challenges, which has led to significant improvements in engagement and output.

Learn more

Download the Game Change book

Game Change

  • Jane McGonigal guest speaking with PHD
  • Cannes Lions Festival


  • Adam Morgan guest speaking with PHD
  • Cannes Lions Festival

10 ways to tell a challenger story

There is more to being a challenger brand than David vs Goliath. Telling the story of ‘Small vs Big’ is indeed one kind of potentially successful challenger narrative, but only one – and not the most frequent, despite its brand mythology. Overthrow is an exploration by eatbigfish and PHD of the 10 most common successful challenger narratives; what they share, how they differ, and how they should structure their media behaviours in today’s highly connected world.

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What type of challenger are you?  Find out