Ask your self this question, In which business are we really in? And stay far from the dark world of commodities. . .
I am astonished!!! I just witness how in three days a clan of marketers – brand managers, advertisers, researchers - drove a brand into the huge world of commodities, these people approach the brand building process as a conjunction of ideas- do not matter if the ideas were good or bad- and were clearly afraid to innovate and challenge the rules of their game.
If you are planning to maintain your brand as far as you can from the dark world of commodities, why not innovate by reconsider the category in which you compete and create your own rules.
As Theodor Levits from Harvard business school once exemplified it: “The once- powerful railroads were blindsided first by automobiles and then by airlines. This happens because railroad companies define them selves too narrowly as being in the railroad business rather than the transportation business. ”
But redefining your industry does not mean hiring a new ad agency to think a fancy new slogan ad and spend millions of dollars communicating it. . To make it work, you have to approach your brand building process strategically and communicate it each day in every interaction with your consumer, offering high-quality products and services that your customers rally want and that will reinforce the values offered by your brand and expand the emotional connections your customers fell with it.
When Steve Jobs came back to Apple with the mission of bringing back the brand from the darkness the first thing he did was redefine his business. “What Apple is about, is not making boxes for people to get their jobs done, although we do that very well. Apple is about more than that. What Apple is about, its core value is that we believe people with passion can change the world for the better. That is what we believe. ” Excerpt form Steve Jobs’ speech to software developers
That day Apple created its own game, and became something more, since then Apple has launched products like the i-Mac and G4, and most recently has become the center of the digital music world with the iPod and i-Tunes store.
James Dyson invented his own game when he created the Dyson vacuum cleaner, a vacuum with a unique shape and a clear collector bin, so you can watch the dirt cycloning around. He made fun the vacuum cleaning experience.
If you speak to Richard Branson he would tell you that his business is to create FUNKY business, I wonder who competes with Virgin in this business
Yes, you can think this could be risky if you already are by far the #1 in your industry, but Howard Shultz is trying to transform Starbucks into the largest digital music retailer in the world, he most be crazy.
But maybe brand building is about being rationally crazy.
Scott White is President of Brand Identity Guru a leading Corporate Branding and Branding Research firm in Boston, MA.
Brand Identity Guru specializes in creating corporate and product brands that increase sales, market share, customer loyalty, and brand valuation.
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Over the course of his 15-year branding career, Scott White has worked in a wide variety of industries: high-tech, manufacturing, computer hardware and software, telecommunications, banking, restaurants, fashion, healthcare, Internet, retail, and service businesses, as well as numerous non-profit organizations.
Brand Identity Guru clients include: Sun Life Financial, Coca Cola, HP, Sun, Nordstrom, American Federal Mortgage, Franklin Sports and many others, including numerous emerging growth companies.