Why brands are dying.
My entire philosophy of brands revolves around the star called “feelings.”
And that star may be burning out.
Let me try to explain.
Brand beliefs have always had an underlying fusion of rational and emotional factors.
But people’s choices have always been driven by their feelings.
It’s how humans are wired.
But this may be changing.
“Feelings” are what signal us to approach or avoid things in our environment.
And, as distinct from “emotions,” feelings refer to a very specific quality.
Pleasantness, unpleasantness, or neutrality in an experience.
Pleasant feelings—excitement, reward, increased self-esteem, etc.—condition desire.
Unpleasant feelings—pain, effort required, decreased self-esteem, etc.—condition aversion.
And neutral feelings condition… forgetfulness.
So what are the feelings behind most of today’s brand choices?
Because the marketplace is bursting at the seams with look-alike brands in every category.
And the more brands there are, the less they mean and the more confusion.
So what happens to the primacy of feelings in this scenario?
Typically? They become even more important, as a signalling device.
That’s why, over the years, look-alike brands have spent close to $6 billion on Super Bowl commercials.
But things are changing… and really fast.
So much so, that feelings are losing their authority.
Because of the internet.
Today, when you have a problem, you don’t consult your feelings.
You ask Google or Amazon.
They know better than you do.
Despite every advertisement you’ve ever watched or read.
Do you see and fully appreciate the change?
And the challenge?
Things are changing at a pill-popping rate.
Marketing messages are mushrooming (try saying that three times fast).
New brands are bursting onto the scene.
And feelings are losing their authority to data.
So now what?
There’s only one way forward.
And that’s to go back to the start.
Create nothing but value.
And get as close to the customer as possible.