Differentiation evolved from
“what it is” to “what it does” to
“how you feel” to “who you are”.
Globalism removed borders, we created tribes – intimate social worlds, which we understand and participate in. Brands are the little gods of our modern life – each ruling different need, activity, mind share, tattoo, mood or situation. What is your tribal identity, which tribe you want to join today?
When a prospect finds your offer or company (one-click away, first choice in Google, good color, strong contrast, irresistible arresting brand message, etc.) he thinks:
1. What is it (Who are you) ?
2. What it does (What do you do) ?
3. Why should I care (Why does it matter, what’s in it for me) ?
It’s always better to get a rough answer to the right questions, than a detailed answer to the wrong ones, right? Otherwise it will be less that it could be. So, go ahead, ask them Why you climb Everest? Because it’s there, dude! Why we have to brand-build? Because the BRAND DEPENDS on others for it’s existence: on 72% online searchers of products in information in EU, on the 85% top3 Google search result visitors for any given phrase and market niche.
Why Branding is such a big deal now?
Because our society has moved from mass production to mass customization. We are info-rich and time-poor. Now people value feelings more than informations. Design and aesthetics are the language of feeling. Only one competitor can be the cheapest. The other HAVE TO use branding to become a guarantee of trustworthy behavior. Our purchase choices have muliplied in thousands (sometimes million companies/ websites) and we have to differentiate, to stand out of the crowd, to be in top 3. If we can’t be #1 or 2, or 3, it’s better to redefine our field or to change our tribe/ category.
When people talk to themselves it’s called insanity, when companies do that, it’s called marketing, when customers talk about companies, it’s called brand-building.
Here comes the CBO (Chief Brand Officer)
Lot of people talk about it, few understand it and even fewer know how to manage it but still everyone wants it. Brand-building is connecting strategy to creativity, logic to magic, communicating and managing the difference.
Brand-building is a process that can be studied, analyzed, learned, taught, replicated and managed. Go for the huge worldwide trend of tomorrow; don’t look just for tiny improvements of yesterday’s data.
The more a brand becomes distributed, the more it requires strong centralized management.
The CBO is focused around building and managing sustainable and successful world-class brands.
It’s not about likeness, it’s about understanding: a brand is not what you say it is. It’s what they say it is. The position and degree of trust is the determination and differentiation factor.
A CBO is the brand’s personal recession-proof brandometer – he will show you what the brand is and what makes it tick, he will manage your online reputation, write a brand education program, define the brand’s DNA for constant regeneration of corporate memory, he will control the chaos, necessary for brand’s innovation. If you are tired of thick quantitative studies and analysis paralysis, he will bring you some great brand building ideas into sharp focus, he’ll give you real market insights and new niche ideas in less than 3 days, using a rooster of worldwide research partners and databases. You will never skew or loose the focus.
The CBO is the executive, who lies awake at night, thinking “How can we build the brand?”. He will manage brand collaboration, innovation and strategy at the highest corporate level, forming a human bridge across strategy and creativity, connecting the left and right brain of your business.
A charismatic brand is any product, service or company for which people believe there’s no substitute. Any brand, backed by enough courage and imagination can become a charismatic brand, even yours.
Am I a CBO? I was for more than 10 years. Now CBOs are my best friends (and customers) in the great wild world out there. So, are you a CBO?