i have not posted a blog in so long, i have a back log of content and thoughts and now i dont know where to start. one thought that did come to mind first, especially now living in johannesburg where it seems to be a lot more prominent – is the line.
Above the line, below the line, through the line, “on the line” what is this line we live by communicating our products and services?
In a world where access to information is a simple click of a button, it is only a natural progression for brands to be more authentic. It is all about being real and honest in communication, so how does this influence the way we market? And how long does it take for a brand to forget about the line and talk to the consumer like a real person?
My favourite brand I have worked on so far is glaceu vitaminwater. I have been lucky enough to experience a global strategy that is sure to make headlines in all modern marketing text books. Like with everything in life, each situation is unique and it does not necessarily mean that what works for a will work for b. But, what I did learn is that if you focus on communicating the true value of your product in a way that is best suited for both the brand and the person buying, then, purchasing becomes the natural next step. Further down the line, innovation will deliver continuous satisfaction and creative ways of providing more for less will sustain sales. Energy and belief in the product from all involved will make sure that everyone wants to be a friend. So in essence, it is really simple. The moment brands stop trying so hard and let the consumers be part of their lives is when the brand will really become part of their lives in return.
This leads me to think about this line, which I have not figured out just yet, but at the moment see as the life path of the brand. Similar to the life of a person, it is all about where you are along the path of life and your own personality that will determine what is best for you. I think our structured conventional way of categorizing communication based on a line, is becoming an obstacle in reaching the right people and providing them with an opportunity to purchase. Merely moving “below the line” because of budget cuts is like feeding a baby cereal because food is too expensive, it is a dangerous thing to do, in fact it may kill you. But truly understanding where the baby is a long the path of life will eliminate wasting money on incorrect nutrition and expensive doctor bills.
It is no different with brands, if a little bit more time is spent on truly understanding the brand, where it is in life, and who it is really “hanging out” with, it will be a lot easier to provide the perfect mix of everything it needs in order to be a good friend to everyone, those already a friend and every new person a long the way.
I am so happy that we are moving into an era where it is no longer about influencing people to buy products they don’t need, but rather providing the right people with the right information to make better purchasing decisions. Like the shift from fixed marriage arrangements to online dating ☺
It will be interesting to see which brands make a concerted effort to be a little bit more honest and organic in the way they let the lives of their brands evolve, and to see the line for what it really is – a life rather than another man made marketing criteria.
Lets take all the marketing jargon, forget it and start over swapping the “strategically thought out headline” – for a simple, honest chat.
Just for fun – my two favourite online newsletters worth checking out – http://www.springwise.com & the cool hunter! – see, a simple chat 🙂 happy winter everyone.