The Modern Brand: Building to Compete

The Modern Brand: Building to Compete

The cost of a brand failure is high, often to the tune of millions—even billions—of dollars.

New brands are hatched and sent forth into the marketplace every day. Most of them will fail within a year or two, sometimes within months. And each year, a certain number of known and established 20th century brands will die. At the time of death, many of them will still have brand awareness and even decent market share, but they are no longer connected to the 21st century customer, whose contract demands an emotional bond.

Why do brands fail?

Brands can fail for many reasons, but one big one is that they were not built to compete in the new economy. Often, strategists in business, marketing, and branding are looking back, instead of looking ahead. They waste time imitating what has been done before, instead of innovating and differentiating. Instead of investing time, thought and money in a forward-looking master brand strategy, instead of creating authenticity, originality, and reality, and instead of investing long-term in inventive product design, technologies and service touchpoints that benefit their customers and society at large, they rely on the past as something to repeat.

If it’s already been done, don’t do it. Do something else. And design that something else to appeal to today’s customer, not yesterdays.

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