The International Writers Magazine: NASEEM JAVED on GLOBAL
Hole of Corporate Branding
Hey Rolex, come to mama and play with Infinity.
Is this the dawning of the age of
branding or just another black hole?
Learn and teach new standards, lead and spread the new knowledge
in your organization, break the old methods. The sooner you come
out of the bondage of the old fashioned marketing and branding
campaigns, the sooner you will see a new dawn. There is certainly
light on the other side of this black hole.
term Le Branding started out in the Dark Ages, where marks
were burned onto cattle.
On ever-so-slowly-evolving minds of the Homo sapiens this word also
made a solid impression
and provides a daily dose of comfort. Belonging to a product and a brand
name, offering taste
and vanity offers a security blanket. A warm fuzzy feeling when a huge
name is printed on the chest.
The mind and body just craves to carry something with a logo, color
and stripes, wear anything
as long as its identifiable, get tattooed with names or razor
lines on skinned heads or name
babies after brand names. Hey Rolex, come to mama and play with
Infinity. The hungry souls
want something, just about anything, as long as it is a name, one could
brag or chat about.
Companies created great items and developed great name identities. The
delighted and supported artificial shortages, presented addictive designing
while pricing them
very high, all as qualifiers to make a real expensive brand. It was
wonderful. Everyone contended.
Everyone became a brand carrier, infesting the herds and paying dearly.
Three Major Branding Eras
Starting The Romancing Age
In the earlier days, great new products were created leading to powerful
marketing and branding strategies.
Everything required distinct packaging, colorful logo-design and a solid
name. Mass promotion at any
cost was a must. The creation of frenzy was the rule and watching the
consumers drool during the hype
was the norm. It really worked.
Leaving The Coercing Age
Later, when the dilution factor kicked in and thousands of new copycat
brand names flooded the markets,
it forced new twists and required new methods of persuasion. This time,
strange and crazy gimmicks
became the standard while customers started getting fussy, and became
wolves in sheeps clothing.
Branding became a serious challenge, partially for lack of originality
of the products wrapped with ineffective
blitz advertising and missing of unique brand name identity.
Entering The Rejection Age
Today with zillions of similar brands and zillions of confusing names
most are simply look-a-likes and
sound-a-likes. Now, the sheer boredom and the volume of new offers by
the thousands have killed the
fancy. No new product, no new category, no new design and no-nothing
attracting the herds. Yawn time.
Today, either big name brands are offered at bottom prices, or useless
products are offered at top brand
prices. Both options being ignored by the cuddly wolves. Today, its
a state of mass confusion and big rejection.
Future of Branding
This now brings me to the future of branding. Customers have slowly
transformed into connoisseurs
of very cheap deals, practicing a downward-spiral-pricing-format on
the web, compliments of a powerful
mouse while businesses are acting more like elephants jumping in fear.
How Dumbo that is.
Todays net-savvy customer now dangles the mouse in the face of
the giant corporation and gets hundred
of competing products and services in a second
simply tremors more.
Is this the reason, businesses are turning into mediocre marketing and
losing their magic touch?
Every business, by and large is simply following each other, very sheepishly
searching and looking at each other for ideas to copy. Is this the reason
that all car commercials look the same, all the financial services act
the same, and all the names sound the same? Never mind the identical
logos, designs, packaging, adverts and particularly the expensive taglines.
Originality and guts to lead are in great scarcity. The Age
of Duplication is now upon us. The branding and design
industry is equally dumbfounded during this meltdown of their services.
The future looks pretty dark.
Three Revolutionary Ideas:
Should We Ban the word Branding
Why? This term, so unnecessarily used by such a large number of unqualified
services as a band-aid to all problems irrespective of size or type.
Should this term be banned? The brand-happy agency teams are often busy
chasing beaten-up ideas without a clue while a handful of experts are
watching by the sidelines. Without new rules, there is no branding,
and what worked on cattle may not work with the general population of
the future. The big question is, what are the brand new laws of branding,
corporate image and naming cyber-identities? What are the real cost
savings in new global cyber visibility and how do you recognize when
overly used branded exercises are just sinking the projects?
Should We Stop Attracting Customers.
Why? To get the attention of new customers is now the hardest, so should
we blame them or the floods of junky ad messages climbing on each other?
Customers are now like quiet nocturnal creepers; they go hunting in
the silence of the night in the cyber-jungles searching for cheapest
They know how to find what they need and know exactly what to get. Should
we simply let
customers find us, and how? The landscape has totally changed.
The old model of opening
a big store and aggressively promoting it to attract customers is gone.
Your top dollar structures
and expensive logistics have no incentive if they can get better value
and services for few cents.
The day of dollar-a-day labor is showing its power. Should we now discover
the fine art of visibility
and check out how to become accessible on global e-commerce. How do
we make sure they can
find us first, before we search for them?
Should We Globalize, Localize or Simply Die.
Why? There are brand new rules of global marketing. A proper discovery
process on how to approach visibility while building clean international
name identities for this global name-economy is a must. Globalization
will make the localization process manageable. Look out for feelings
of certain numbness while sitting in a quiet time zone in a corporation.
This is something that the great Alvin Toffler mentioned in Future
Shock. Facing the current realities of globalization of supply
chain and labor can be a real shock. Learn and teach new standards,
lead and spread the new knowledge in your organization, break the old
methods. The sooner you come out of the bondage of the old fashioned
marketing and branding campaigns, the sooner you will see a new dawn.
There is certainly light on the other side of this black hole.
Naseem Javed, author of Naming for Power and Domain Wars, is
recognized as a world authority on Global Name Identities and Domain
Issues. He introduced The Laws of CorporateNaming in the 80's and also
founded ABC Namebank,
a consultancy established in New York and Toronto a quarter century
ago. Naseem conducts exclusive executive workshops on image and name
identities issues via web conferences. www.azna.com/tech.htm
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