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The problem with brand building is there’s no single approach to achieving greatness.
It’s not for lack of trying.
Ever since I’ve been in the industry – which is longer than a murderer gets in jail – there’s been this quest to identify the ‘ultimate solution’ … the methodology that can bestow brand dominance on all who use it.
However, despite all the time, money and research we’ve put into looking, there’s a reason we haven’t found it and that’s because it doesn’t exist … and the reason it doesn’t exist is because for all the things marketing can control, there’s one thing it can’t.
Until those pesky humans stop having a mind of their own … a mind that continually changes and fills up with things that they think are more important – like paying the mortgage or deciding what to cook for dinner – we’re going to continually be asking ourselves questions that ultimately have no definitive, future-proof answer.
Why am I saying all this?
Because for the last few months I’ve been [foolishly] asked by a number of people, media & academia to answer 2 questions …
+ How will the approach to brand building change over the next 10 years?
+ What role will brands play in consumer’s lives in 2020 and beyond?
… and while I could write a bunch of predictions that make me look informed and smart [especially because people would have to wait till 2023 to be able to tell me I’m wrong] the fact is, I haven’t got the faintest.
Of course there are a number of things we can be sure of.
Digital will become even more powerful and influential as technology continues to find ways to seamlessly integrate into our lives, routines and behaviour … storytelling will remain the bridge between commerce and culture and strong, demonstrable, points-of-view will become even more important in driving differentiation, loyalty and relevance [albeit to more niche, hard-to-reach audiences] … however the reality is the future is not a pre-determined place, it’s something you have to continually create and shape by pushing, prodding, exploring and provoking which is why I prefer to go with the all encompassing answer:
It’s whatever you’re willing to make it.
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