Branding campaigns are like costumes that advertisers wear to the Media Masquerade Ball. They were once a spectacular fashion statement at a time when the advertising industry was coming of age.
But now, as we’re moving into the post COVID era, you can look around and see that we are embracing transparency over artifice, simplicity over complexity, and new over old.
So what’s our new branding era really all about?
New branding is about being authentic, engaging, and memorable. It’s about connecting with customers on a deeper level and creating a lasting impression.
It’s about being real, and it’s about being new.
What does that mean for your brand?
It means that it’s time to start thinking differently about how you market yourself, and maybe that involves a brand refresh or complete debranding altogether.
To learn about this perspective on new branding and how to succeed in tomorrow’s marketplace, keep on reading.
A New Perspective on Branding
New branding is about truth. It’s about substance. It’s about what you do, not what you say you do.
It’s about being authentic as well as bold. New branding is about having a point of view, sticking to it, and having the courage to stand up for what you believe in.
Before, building a brand was centered around features and benefits. All that it took for people to make a purchase was to display why your product was that much better than your competitor’s.
But now, as the market has become increasingly fragmented and competitive, that old model just doesn’t work anymore. People are more interested in sympathetic vibrations, shared values, and an alignment of perspectives. It’s no longer about buying what you sell, but buying who you are.
You might argue that in the time when baby boomers had a bit more spring in their step that this wasn’t true at all: “Look at Coke versus Pepsi — they conjured emotional meaning because their products were basically the same!”
But the difference between then and now is that they only claimed to stand for honorable values. In today and tomorrow’s branding, you are those honorable values.
If you ran an old ad for Coke that spewed messages of world peace and perfect harmony today, people will call your bluff immediately, calling the brand a phony poser.
There is a new language of branding on the horizon, but are you listening? Are you keeping up?
How To Succeed in Tomorrow’s Marketplace?
Succeeding in tomorrow’s marketplace means businesses must adapt to the ever-changing landscape. They need to be able to anticipate trends and needs as well as be able to respond quickly and efficiently.
Being aware of these shifts and being able to adapt their new branding strategies accordingly will help them stay ahead of the curve and ahead of competitors. Currently, the market is influencing brands to create sustainable practices, focus on personalization, and create immersive experiences for their customers.
To appeal to this growing market, businesses need to focus on sustainable practices such as using recycled materials, reducing waste, and supporting renewable energy sources.
Personalization is another big trend that is here to stay. Customers want brands to cater to their individual needs and preferences. They want products and services that are tailored specifically for them – think Netflix with their seamless algorithm that knows just the right movie to recommend you, or Amazon with their one-click shopping feature.
Finally, businesses need to create immersive experiences for their customers. This can be done through Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) technologies. These technologies allow customers to interact with products and services in a completely new way.
To be able to tap into these trends, businesses need to have a clear understanding of their target market as well as what needs and wants they have. Only then will businesses be able to create a brand that can truly thrive in tomorrow’s marketplace.
Introducing the New Age Brands
Now that you have a better understanding of today’s new perspective on branding and what you may need to focus on to stay relevant in our current and future market, let’s share some of the impressive new-age brands that are doing it right.
Calm’s core product is a $15-a-month subscription service that gives users access to more than 100 guided meditations, sleep stories, and other content meant to help with anxiety, stress, and insomnia.
The mindfulness app has proven time and time again what a unique brand can gain when it creates content that adds to the culture and taps into shared experiences amongst society.
For instance, to engage its listeners, Calm has added celebrity voices like LeBron James and Maya Rudolph, as well as Sleep Stories for kids featuring favorites like the Minions and Peppa Pig.
And on the brand marketing front, Calm chimed in on conversations regarding mental health, supporting tennis star Naomi Osaka by donating $15,000 to Laureus Sport, a French mental health organization.
This attracted a ton of positive attention, earning the brand $28 million in a week. It just goes to show how when a brand is purpose-driven, it can transcend marketing to create a real movement.
This burrito-making fast/casual chain has upped its social cred by leveraging social media and finding creative ways to engage with its customers.
After raising its minimum wage to $15 an hour, Chipotle hosted a virtual job fair on Discord, a new popular chat and video server. They also made a Halloween-themed corn maze on Roblox that offered free burritos to the first 30,000 users that completed the game.
This shows that Chipotle knows exactly where its customer base resides and how to reach them in a way that is interactive and fun.
This effectively spiked revenue by 26.1 percent in 2021 totaling $7.5 billion. In fact, 45.6 percent of their sales are now digital, which provided a great recovery from the safety-related fall they experienced six years ago.
Chipotle’s social media engagement is the perfect example of how to reach your target audience. It’s the kind of good branding and social media engagement that other brands should definitely take note of and learn from.
Beauty and personal care brands we among the first to bounce back after the COVID-19 lockdown. So much in fact that they were experiencing approximately 80 to 90 percent year-on-year business growth.
Brands like Mamaearth, Vedix, Myglamm, and Juicy Chemistry are just a few new branding examples that are racking in 80 percent revenue from their website alone. This is good news for their investors as brands like Myglamm raised a relative price strength rating of 175 in its Series C funding led by Amazin, Ascent Captial, and Wipro Consumer.
For beauty brands, having the bulk of their sale comes from their own website not only helps to connect with their customers at a deeper level but also creates better margins.
With the current pandemic and the rise in e-commerce, it is more important than ever for brands to deliver a higher better brand experience with lower dependency on third-party platforms and a focus on authenticity.
IKEA, the popular home furnishing store, is another new age brand. The company’s mission has always been to “create a better everyday life for the many people” and they stand firmly by that sentiment.
Today, IKEA has focused more and more on prioritizing sustainability, the use of natural resources, and lowering energy consumption. The brand sources approximately half of its wood from sustainable foresters and 100 percent of its cotton comes straight from ethical farms.
Not only that, their packaging is compact to reduce how much cardboard is used, and they never offer plastic bags for any small items that are purchased. That caused the giant blue IKEA bag to become a thing of legend, and is a mark of branding genius.
All this, tied in with even their work culture of gifting bikes and offering positions dedicated to environmental causes, has stamped IKEA as a model of how a business should be run with sustainability in mind.
What Do You Stand For?
New branding doesn’t have to mean throwing everything you’ve built down the drain. It means digging deeper into who you really are, to your core, as a brand.
It’s about what you stand for and the positive impact you want to make, and if that takes reassessing your brand development or creating a brand new logo, then so be it.
So if you’re feeling lost and uncertain about your brand’s future, know that you’re not alone. It’s time to take a step back and assess what you stand for and where you want to go.
We understand that change can be hard, but it doesn’t have to be.
At Wizard of Ads™, we can help make that process easier and more manageable for you. We offer branding services that are designed to help your business stay relevant in today’s constantly changing market.
Contact us today to book a call and find out how we can help get your brand back on track!