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If there's one lesson Alex Reed could share with his fellow business-to-business marketers it would be "just stand out." It's a lesson he's taken to heart during his 10 years at the immodestly named Big Ass Fans, the industrial strength fans that you'll find in gyms, warehouses, atriums and other giant rooms around the globe. Having taken over the global marketing director role four years ago, Reed sees humor and personality as essential elements of the company's success.

As you'll learn in our interview below, Big Ass Fans does not put portray itself as a typical b-to-b brand. It has fun with its name and even more fun when someone gets offended by it. Ironically, the one time it jumped on a marketing bandwagon it failed miserably, leaving Reed to bemoan, "I've never understood the inclination for people to just gravitate towards the norm." (More on that below.) Staying true to the brand and its unique culture, Big Ass Fans has built the kind of loyalty and word of mouth rarely seen in the normally staid industrial b-to-b marketplace.

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