Brands have never had it better
After decades of struggling to fully understand consumers, they now hold the key to complete enlightenment: customer data. Armed with smartphones, tablets and laptops, many consumers relinquish their personal data so that brands can provide them with unique, personalized experiences. Many brands have already figured out the digital customer experience.
They brilliantly convert consumer insight into content and stylized offers that fit customers’ needs, in real time. But their success didn’t come after waving a magic wand. They first figured out how to make sense of all their customer data by aligning their processes with technology. This foundational work included putting the right people in charge, forming customer personas, creating relevant KPIs and figuring out which content management system and other technologies best integrate with all of that.
featurING special guest:
Every organization has a not-so-secret weapon: data. It’s incredibly valuable information generated from every aspect of the enterprise, including research and development, sales and marketing, supply chain and customer service. Every activity in every facet of the business provides data. And it goes well beyond the organization’s four walls.
Having discussed what agile is and means, let’s talk more specifically about the current state of branding, and what I’ve defined as the Agile Brand. Agility is built on principles of sprints and optimization discussed in the previous chapter, and on the fundamentals of branding. There are five key things agile brands do which sets them apart.
Building on the last episode that discussed agile methodology, this episode explores agile marketing in greater depth.
Although this topic could take up an entire podcast on its own, this episode briefly discusses what agile methodology is, and how it applies to marketing and branding.
The fourth and current stage of the evolution of brands. As more and more brands have adopted the experience approach, it has become clearer that a one-off moment in time is not enough to cement brand loyalty. This takes us to the current stage in the evolution of brands: brand as relationship.
The third stage in the evolution of brands. With increased competition, and consumer preference for more tailored products and services, brands were forced to differentiate themselves beyond occupying an idea. They needed to insert themselves into key life moments and become part of our experience. Apple’s brand experience extends all the way from the initial sale (either in one of its branded stores or its online presence), through the packaging you open to first use your product, through the ease of setup, through usage of the product every day. And if you have problems, you can go to the Apple Store to ask questions. In more recent times, brands have used experience to cut through the clutter of marketing and advertising, which creates deeper engagement with customers.
The second stage in the evolution of brands. With increasing competition from mass production, mass advertising, and mass media in general, the need for brands to be more than an object came along. Brands now needed to compete for mindshare. As consumers and marketers have grown more sophisticated, it is not enough to simply be known. Companies and products must stake out a claim on an area of the popular imagination and exist as an “idea.”
The first stage in the evolution of brands. Our use of logos to represent companies, organizations, or individuals is based on a long history that originates with the very beginning of written communication. The moment we used a drawing, an image, a symbol to represent something else, we’ve been essentially branding things. From cave paintings to hieroglyphics, to the first logo representing a company, we’ve been using graphic representations to give meaning to ideas.
I discuss how I first fell in love with the concept of branding, at a rather young age, and through my appreciation for cars. Auto branding taught me hierarchy, positioning, and many more things.
In order for a brand to be strong, it must remain relevant or find a way to be culturally relevant in the moment.