Must read: Negative and Positive Planners over at Dave Trott's Campaignlive blog.
Must read #2: The logo isn't dead, it's just irrelevant by Jason Little at D&AD.
To get to the value of branding, you really have to look more broadly than the visual. It’s about actions, behaviour and personality. The key is crafting every experience and interaction so it adds up to something worthwhile.