Monday, July 11, 2011

Your brand is not the center of my universe

The problem most marketing executives have is perspective.

They spend eight, ten, twelve or sixteen hours a day thinking about their brands. They're in meeting after meeting where the topic is the brand. They're writing marketing plans about the brand. They're obsessing over brand identity and packaging details. Attending brand discovery focus groups. Picking apart the competitive brands. They're listening to their agency tell them how cool the brand is. In short, their brands occupy most of their lives.

Meanwhile, here's what's happening on the other side of the fence.

I see your commercial, say "that's cool" then get a phone call from a friend who wants to play golf tomorrow. Poof, you're gone.

I'm rushing through the store, filling my cart, trying to get home in time to make dinner. Your brand may be just one of fifty that I've thought about for ten seconds during that trip, if you're lucky.

I'm at the bar after our round of golf where there are fifteen taps and thirty other bottled beers available. Which brand is yours again?

There are thousands of brands in my life every day. From my computer to my toothpaste to my cereal to my shirt and on and on.

I barely have time for relationships with all the people I know. I certainly don't have time for a relationship with every brand I use.

I'll use your product and if it works I'll buy it again. If it doesn't, I'll probably move on. But I'm not going to have a conversation with you. I'm not going to 'like' you on Facebook so you can tell me how special you are every day.

Your brand may mean everything to you. It means very little to me.

Make it interesting. Make it different. Make it easy. Make it good. Then I'll give you money for the privilege of using it.

That is the extent of our 'relationship.'

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