We Wrote The Book

August 31, 2020

New book shows challenger brands how company culture can create distinction.

In “The Voice of the Underdog,” advertising veterans Mike Sullivan and Michael Tuggle explain how challenger brands can turn disadvantage to their favor by using company culture to drive the kind of differentiation that resonates with consumers. Filled with fascinating case studies, entertaining stories, and engaging insights, the book examines the true essence of what makes a company a challenger brand, unveils how successful challengers of all sizes use culture to create extraordinary brand distinction, and finishes with a detailed blueprint for building your own transcendent culture.

Loaded with instructive examples from brands both big and small, the authors explain how companies like In-N-Out Burger, First United Bank, Red Bull, REI, and scores more use their company cultures to accomplish more with less. Often outmatched when it comes to advertising and marketing resources, these challengers manage to create unique brand identities that stand up to competitive affronts at every turn.


Mike Sullivan

Mike Sullivan is president and CEO of LOOMIS, the country’s leading challenger brand advertising agency. For more than 30 years, he’s helped some of the country’s most successful companies build their brands while building his own ad agency brands. Under his leadership, Hadeler Sullivan Ewing was named ADWEEK’s “Hottest Shop in the Southwest,” and at LOOMIS he helped the Agency earn distinction as an Ad Age “Small Agency of the Year.” Driven by Sullivan’s focus on creating strong company culture, LOOMIS has also been recognized six consecutive years as a “Best Place to Work” by both The Dallas Morning News and the Dallas Business Journal. In The Voice of the Underdog, Sullivan draws on his blend of experience building strong brands and great culture, and shares his insights about what happens when leaders focus their attention on doing both.

Michael Tuggle

Michael Tuggle is president of Tuggle Creative Inc. and former co-executive creative director at LOOMIS. For more than 28 years, Tuggle has used his creative and writing talents to build both category leaders and challenger brands alike including American Airlines, Pepsi, Papa John’s Pizza, Stanley Steemer and Texas Dairy Queen. While he’s been recognized regionally and nationally for his creative work, when Tuggle helped start LOOMIS on day one, his focus was as much on building a company as it was on building a portfolio. That started with building the LOOMIS culture. In The Voice of the Underdog, Tuggle mixes his talent for storytelling with his love for the ad business to create a narrative that inspires and teaches anyone committed to creating a culture that will last.


“In markets where every competitor looks alike to consumers, true differentiation starts from the inside. Sullivan and Tuggle take that idea one step further and show that the way a company behaves has everything to do with the way it performs as a brand from the inside and out.”

— Wes Bates, Chairman, Stanley Steemer

“This is an empowering book! One sentence in the Introduction says it all to me: “Company culture serves as the most fundamental challenger brand advantage there is.” Mike Sullivan and Michael Tuggle have walked their talk, as Co-Creators, in building The LOOMIS Agency brand with their team and for their clients — and in this book. Challengers spark learning and growth in others — and evoke a response from those they touch. Be prepared for The Voice of the Underdog to be such a Challenger for you!”

— David Emerald, Author, The Power of TED* (*The Empowerment Dynamic) and 3 Vital Questions: Transforming Workplace Drama

“Some leaders intuitively understand the link between culture and brand, but most don’t understand how one drives the other. The authors do a masterful job linking cause and effect with examples readers can use to make their companies and their brands stronger.”

— Greg Massey, CEO, First United Bank

Founded in 1985, LOOMIS is an award-winning advertising agency specializing in identifying and leveraging strategic advantages for national and regional challenger brands with specific expertise in restaurants, retail, and franchising. Learn more at theloomisagency.com.