The tendentious Dr. Utterson is back | Chapter 1

Some of you, actually only few of you, remember the very beginnings of Brand 3.0… The original name of this social network was “Jekyll & Hide on Branding”… It had 3 pages and the third one was the one that talked about trends, and the one who ‘wrote’ there was Dr. Utterson, the lawyer and loyal friend of Jekyll.

So, getting to the point, this is the first post of several which will talk about trends and branding… connections, implications and challenges… Hope you enjoy them!

Trend #1: Status and recognition

When you interact with other people you will discover (it’s not so difficult) that almost everything comes back to the need of recognition.

So, in a certain way and as a relative concept, status is like a brand driver; however, it looks like during the next months/years (perhaps and in certain way due to the crisis) those brands that behaved as traditional status symbols are not going to be the “aspirational desire” that we saw before.

As it was said in TrendWatching 2010, “status is to be attained in many more ways than leading a lifestyle centered on hoarding as many branded, luxury goods as possible”….

In certain societies, financial wealth is becoming something less important… In those cases, luxury goods would lose relevance.

Hence, status could be understood as:

  • Green Status: For these people, to drive a Prius would give more status than having a Rolls
  • Info Status: For people who have an audience willing to hear what they know… what they have to say
  • Experience status: it will be more important the story behind the product than some functional/physical status symbols
  • Knowledge status: As more people are becoming masters in the use of the tools, to “know why” will become a status symbol
  • Online status: Hmmmm… You know what I’m talking about [however, try to avoid the recipes to build your personal brand]
  • And… Traditional status will be seen only in emerging middle class people in countries like the ones that belong to the BRIC [Brazil, Russia, India, China]

Challenge #1: The brand understanding shift

This will not be to re-invent the wheel… If, at least for a moment, we admit that the trend presented before is true [actually, there is no reason to believe another thing… I’m just telling what it’s observed], brands are facing a great inflection point and companies will need to do something:

  • More than ever, brands must behave as a holistic experience considering the brand itself, the communication, but also, the product, the value perceived, its usefulness, availability, related services… And other new issues like interactivity, asynchronism and tailor-made
  • The ones who are acquiring online, info and knowledge status are becoming prescribers… Brands must make those individuals fall in love with them…
  • Luxury brands are facing the end of their golden age. People are beginning to give more weight to issues that are out of the “economy sphere” to achieve their desired recognition

Actually, it seems like the real issue is not in the brand but in a need of a deep company shift in some encysted beliefs. Dont’ you think?

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Allegro 234

About the author

Allegro 234 is a global branding and innovation consultancy that catalyzes your company grow through its brands and culture. [email protected]

Jan 28, 2010

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