Do we need more good brands?
The word "brand", comes with a taint, as we would say in Swabian. Many people associate the term brand with unpleasant things such as:
- Heartless commerce
- Untrue product promises
- Contentless mass products
- Overpriced products
Cynically put, many brands could be defined like this:
Scrape down what is authentic, courageous and your own from a good idea, and then throw what remains onto the market as a standardised series product.
Unfortunately, this description sounds like the opposite of art. Therefore, we would like to raise the question whether we need more good brands.There are really a lot of bad brands on the marketThewriter Nassim Nicolas Taleb listed some heuristics or life lessons in his bestseller Antifragile. One of them is
never to buy products that are advertised on TV
As an explanation for this rule, he stated that the advertised products are usually overpriced and of inferior quality, since the costs for advertising are enormously high and have to be included in the calculation. You will probably agree with Taleb in 90% of all cases. Cheaply produced snacks + fast food, cosmetics and consumer goods dominate the advertising landscape. It is all the more understandable that the brand concept suffers. The idea of living in a world free of brands is becoming increasingly tempting.
Yet the idea behind brands is quite significant in itself.
In essence, a brand is the interplay of certain characteristics, a kind of personality in the material world. A brand stands for a vision of the future of life in its condensed form and expresses this through services and physical products.So what is the characteristic of products that connects them on the one hand and distinguishes them from others on the other?what is for sale on a wristwatch or a T-shirt is not the product itself. What we want to buy is not so easy to grasp, but it is all the more important to us. We want to buy a sense of belonging, to share a certain vision, to acquire the character or soul behind a product. Brands can stand for great things
A brand can provide the template and set the rules. You don't have to be a genius yourself to get a slice of the genius pie. That's good news! Because there aren't that many geniuses out there and we just don't want the good things to depend on rare phenomenon.
The big goal should be to raise the importance of the brand concept to a higher level.
We need and we benefit from the good things that have established themselves as brands. Unfortunately, in economic and business life, it has become commonplace that a good brand is a strong and well-known brand. The raw capitalist is only impressed by a brand if as many people as possible buy it.Shouldn't we start asking other questions?
- What makes a brand admirable in terms of humanity?
- What makes them good in terms of their influence on human development?
- How can a brand help us live the best life we can?
Brands invite us to understand that great things usually never, or almost never, happen because of single individuals in an act of heroic isolation. Every good idea, every important insight, should at some point go through the process that a good brand must go through on its way. Because all that really means is that the idea, the insight should increase its influence in this world. And that people can follow it from now on.The world urgently needs good brands!